Research Support


Engineering IT has a dedicated User Services Research Support team specifically trained and focused to provide technical support to the College of Engineering research mission. Engineering research groups can benefit from IT professionals with diverse technical skills and backgrounds who can provide a full range of support needs. User Services Research IT professionals are aware of lab safety procedures and sensitivity of data when working in research environments. The goal of Research Support is to provide a more holistic approach to the IT needs of the entire group, while still providing technical support to individual workstations within a research group.  This includes setting up modeling tools, setting up shared computational or research workstations, managing software licensing, consultation on the purchase of research computing hardware, and assistance obtaining other research-related campus services.  It would also include setting up computers to connect to various devices such as custom experimental equipment, 3D printers, and cleanroom tools.


All enrolled users receive support for IT needs related to their research activities and projects as well as support of their desktops, laptops, and mobile devices. Windows and Mac OS are fully supported on both desktops and laptops. Engineering’s Managed Linux (based on Scientific Linux) is fully supported for desktops. Other versions of Linux are supported on a best-effort support model. Android and iOS mobile devices are also fully supported. Additional mobile device support is described on the Mobile Device page. Best effort is provided for all other platforms.


Ordering, Setup, and Maintenance

  • Configuration, ordering, and receiving for research-related computer hardware and software
  • Initial setup including network configuration, UOFI Active Directory, and OS security
  • Initial setup of both standard application pool and research-specific software
  • Connection of computers to devices, such as custom experimental equipment, 3D printers, and cleanroom tools


  • Recommendation of computers appropriate for the research needs
  • Assistance in finding and using other research-related campus services


  • Troubleshooting and resolution of research related software and hardware issues on supported computers to the best of Engineering IT staff members’ combined abilities. This generally includes getting hardware and applications to run as designed. In-depth knowledge of the features and function of individual applications is outside the scope of this service.

Research Software Licensing

  • Coordination with vendors for software license agreements, renewals, and hosting arrangements


  • Initial and ongoing configuration of operating system and applications, monitoring, and incident response/resolution
  • Installation of endpoint management software for ongoing regular maintenance including OS and application updates as well as system vulnerability monitoring.
  • Engineering IT will keep abreast of, and follow, industry best practices for security, State and University policies, and the requirements and recommendations of Technology Services.

Bundled Services

The following services are provided to all users covered by Research Support.

Available To

Departments, units, and research groups within the College of Engineering.

Service Hours

Requests will receive a response within one business day, Monday through Friday, 8:30am to 5:00pm, excluding University holidays.

Support Contacts

Email: engrit-help [at] illinois [dot] edu
Phone: 217-333-1313


Research Support is an uplift charge. Departments provide the Basic Support cost for everyone, and the difference between that and the current Research Support cost is the fee charged to subscribers to this service. Please see the Service Fees page for more details.

Service Terms

Users of this service agree to the following terms:

  • Engineering IT must be consulted on all new purchases or acquisitions of machines or software to be supported.
  • Engineering IT must have administrator-level privileges on all supported computers.
  • Engineering IT reserves the right to refuse support on hardware or software that is significantly past end-of-life (Typically five years for PCs; past vendor support for software). Exceptions for specific research needs will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  • Engineering IT will build, maintain, and install standard operating system images on all supported computers. In cases where standard systems cannot meet the requirements of the user, Engineering IT will implement the best alternative solution.
  • Engineering IT will apply updates on a regular basis. Updates may require a restart of the computer. Engineering IT will also install critical or emergency software updates with minimal notice if necessary for overall network security. Some exceptions are possible.
  • All purchasers of this service must provide an accurate and up-to-date list of users to be supported.
  • In-depth knowledge of the features and function of individual applications is outside the scope of this service.  
  • Server support, cluster support, and storage are separate services from Research Support. Please see the Related Services section below.

New Service Inquiries

Laura T. Herriott
Assistant Director for Research Services
herrio [at] illinois [dot] edu

Related Services

Research groups may be interested in these additional services:

For a broader view of research-related IT support offerings from Engineering IT and on campus, please contact our Research Technology Facilitator, Mark Hart (mshart [at] illinois [dot] edu).

Get Help

Questions about this topic? Don't see what you're looking for?

Email engrit-help [at] illinois [dot] edu, call the Help Desk at 217-333-1313, or contact your primary IT support professional.