CVM Student Computing Information
The College of Veterinary Medicine’s minimum recommendations for existing computers do not differ from the general recommendations of NC State University. However, for those considering the purchase of a new computer we recommend a laptop/tablet computer that aligns with the College of Engineering specifications and offer the following suggestions:
Learning Style Quiz Before choosing a laptop or a tablet, please consider your preferred learning styles. A laptop might be best if you are a verbal or reflective learner, are a fast typist and are very comfortable with a mouse. A tablet might be best if you are a visual or active learner, need to take notes and draw diagrams to learn, or have a slower typing style.
The College of Veterinary Medicine expects that each student will bring a laptop with them to the DVM program that meets or exceeds the CVM Student Computer Recommendations listed below. You can elect to bring a laptop you already own (less than 2 years since manufacture) or one that you have newly purchased.
These specifications meet and/or exceed the hardware requirements for ExamSoft, the CVM’s current testing software.
Please note: An iPad, tablet, or Chromebook is not an adequate laptop replacement. The exam software we use does not work on tablets or tablet-mode laptops. While the MS Surface Pro and the Surface Book are exceptions to this rule, these models are not supported by university IT departments.
Computer Purchase Recommendations
Windows Based (Contact firstname.lastname@example.org w/ configuration questions)
|Operating Systems||Microsoft Windows 10 Enterprise, Education, or Pro (build 21H2 or higher)|
Microsoft Windows 11 Enterprise, Education, or Pro (build 21H2 or higher)
|Memory||8 GB minimum; 16 GB or higher preferred|
|Processor||Intel Core i5 or i7, 11th gen or higher recommended|
|Hard Disk Drive||256 GB SSD (minimum); 512 GB SSD or greater recommended|
|LCD or Monitor||1920×1080 (FHD) or higher recommended|
|WebCam & Mic*||Recommend built-in for laptops |
Peripheral devices for use with desktops
|Wireless**||802.11 ac compliant|
|Warranty||3- or 4-year on-site parts and labor; with 4-year accidental damage protection with laptops|
**You will need built-in wifi or a wifi adapter to connect a desktop or laptop to a local wireless network.
Mac Based (Contact email@example.com w/ configuration questions)
|Operating System||OS – Latest MacOS or iOS (stay current within two versions for Apple Update/Security)|
|Memory||16 GB or higher|
|Processor||Apple M1 or M2 Chip|
|Hard DIsk Drive||512 GB minimum;|
|Warranty||3-year AppleCare (for iPads as well)|
|**Mac Accessories to consider||Ethernet adapter for laptops: USB-C to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter|
Laptop video adapters to use in CVM classrooms: USB-C to VGA or USB-C to HDMI
Amazon Dock/adapter : Gigabit Ethernet, HDMI, USB-A, USB-C charger, SD
- Microsoft Office 365, including full downloadable versions of Office products, is available to NCSU Students at no costs from the NCSU Office 365 website.
- Adobe Acrobat Reader (free download – uncheck Free McAfee options)
- Google Chrome is the recommended and supported browser (free download)
Other software available to students can be found here.
Data and Identity Security
NC State University requires use of approved and up-to-date antivirus software for all computers connected to the university’s wired or wireless network. Approved antivirus recommendations are available from OIT.
NC State provides 20 GB of personal file storage on NCSU Drive. Microsoft Office 365 provides 1 TB of storage. Faculty, staff, and students will no longer have unlimited data storage capacity in their Google Drive space. Do not store your personal, sensitive data (social security numbers, credit card numbers, passwords) in any cloud storage areas. Cloud storage available via Google or Office 365 may be used for other non-sensitive (green, yellow classification level) data or data backup.
Unity ID & Password Protection
It is highly encouraged that you setup User Identification & Authentication (UIA) questions to assist with resetting your account and/or verifying your identity if necessary. You can do that here.
Consider engraving identifying information on computer equipment. NC State Campus Police, offers engraving services. Keep records of serial numbers and Ethernet addresses in a place not on the computer you can find if devices are lost or stolen. See Safe Computing at NC State for more information.
CVM IT can assist students with connecting their personally-owned devices to the university’s wireless. CVM IT does not support software or hardware related issues on personally-owned devices. CVM IT does not grant non-employee students remote access to CVM, Hospital, or NCSU software/systems including network drives from personally-owned devices.The Office of Information Technology Walk-In Center has on-site licensed repair technicians certified to do repairs for several brands of computers.