Software configuration of departmental PCs is done by IT staff to meet the needs of individual users or groups of users, in the case of shared machines. All configuration is done in accordance with licensing requirements. We use a combination of commercial and open source software. Please consult IT staff members with questions about software to ensure that you are getting the best price on purchases and are in license compliance.
On the desktop we are a mixed use shop, still primarily Windows 7 or 10, with gradually increasing Mac OS X usage.
Graduate students rely primarily on their personal laptops. The mix of Windows and Mac usage is heterogeneous and has trended toward Mac adoption. Either platform is viable and well-supported with software options.
Software Available from OIT
When setting up a personal machine, always consult the Duke University Software Licensing page for free or academically priced software. Access is controlled and authenticated by NetID. Your faculty, staff or student status determines what resources are available.
OIT has developed effective online distribution and billing mechanisms. Central budget authority and negotiating finesse has produced an impressive array of software so that most basic needs are covered for free or at quite reasonable cost.