Feature Articles

Internet2 and Regional Optical Networking

All AREN education clients (K-20, libraries, and museums) have full access to Internet2 by default. Common uses of the AREN Internet2 connection include advanced video conferencing and high-speed file transfers. Click here to read the full article. [Download pdf]

ASA MCU Services

Many educational institutions and networks are now providing the opportunity for remote and rural school systems to participate in classes through interactive video conferencing. While this in itself provides great opportunity, the greatest efficiency comes from having the ability for one lecturer to speak to two or more sites at the same time. The implementation of this scenario is supported and made possible by a video Multipoint Control Unit (MCU). Click here to read the full article. [Download pdf]

Integration Services at ASA

A common problem that faces interconnected businesses and organizations is the lack of integration. ASA is proud to offer Integration Services to its clients in Alabama. This is one of the many services that ASA provides and one of the many ways in which we strive to meet the State of Alabama's need for technical resources. Click here to read the full article. [Download pdf]

Build It and They Will Come ...

The Alabama Research and Education Network (AREN) continues to grow at a steady pace. This article discusses network upgrades and projects. Click here to read the full article. [Download pdf]

FPGA Lessons Learned

ASA installed FPGA chips into the Cray XD1 supercomputer at the Alabama Supercomputer Center (ASC). This article is a discussion of FPGA technology, written for people that are new to this chip architecture. Click here to read the full article. [Download pdf]

ASA E-mail Services
Email ASA offers different e-mail services, based on customer needs: Entry Level Plan, Mid-range Level Plan, Custom Level Plan, and E-mail Backup/Recovery Services. These plans include the following basic email services: POP and POPS, IMAP and IMAPS, SMTP and SMTPS, and Basic address book services. ASA also offers advanced services e.g. POP-Before-SMTP and use of an externally available address book. ASA's webmail system provides other basic services, such as personal calendars and personal webmail address books. User administration is simple and secure using ASA's web-based administrative interface! Click here to read the full story. [Download pdf]


WebVPN represents a new technology allowing for secure communication to be established over the Internet through a web browser. This article explores the types of access that can be achieved in WebVPN such as clientless WebVPN and Thin-Client WebVPN. Click here to read the full story. [Download pdf]

Supercomputing Affects Everyone
supercomputing Most people don't realize that the technologies in the average home computer were originally pioneered in the supercomputing field. Let us look at some of the technologies that have historically come from the supercomputing realm into everyday use. Click here to read the full story. [Download pdf]

Alabama Virtual Library (AVL)
AVL Alabama Supercomputer Authority (ASA) is proud to serve as the exclusive technical partner for the Alabama Virtual Library (AVL). Click here to read the full story. [Download pdf]

Alabama Connecting Classrooms, Educators, & Students Statewide (ACCESS)
ACCESS Alabama Supercomputer Authority is the networking technology partner for ACCESS. ASA is working to upgrade the Internet connectivity to participating schools and school systems. Click here to read the full story. [Download pdf]

Spam and Virus Filtering
Filtering Spam, or unwanted bulk email, and viruses have become an increasing problem over the last few years. Click here to read the full story. [Download pdf]

Firewalls in Networking
Firewalls Firewalls are the front line when it comes to securing networks. They can stop attacks originating from within your network as well as those originating from the outside. Click here to read the full story. [Download pdf]

AREN Network Monitoring and Auditing
AREN ASA can provide clients with the local monitoring of all LAN and/or WAN network activity in a school or an entire school system. Monitoring network traffic has many benefits such as providing much needed data that can be used in troubleshooting and in better managing of a network's resources and traffic flow. Click here to read the full story. [Download pdf]

Supercomputers for Education

"Alabama has a surprisingly large number of companies involved in modeling and simulation. According to a survey ... there are about 6,080 modeling and simulation jobs in Alabama (4,600 in industry and 1,480 in federal government). One reason that these companies can be successful is the availability of skilled scientists and engineers that have received their college education in Alabama. The Alabama Supercomputer Authority maintains a facility that gives students the chance to do computation intensive work as part of their degree." This article also provides information on supercomputing upgrades and upcoming events. Click here to read the full article. [Download pdf]

Magazine Articles

ACCESS Distance Learning is featured in Converge Magazine's (pdf) Summer 2007 publication on Page 20.

Archived News Articles

Take 20 Survey
Take 20 Logo Alabama public school educators were recently asked to participate in the Take 20 Alabama Teaching and Learning Survey. The Alabama Supercomputer Authority provided help desk support for the survey. Click here to read the full article. [Download pdf]

AREN Core Infrastructure Upgrades
AREN Over the next few months AREN will be implementing a number of upgrades to its core infrastructure. Internet capacity will increase to a combined 720Mbps. AREN will also install a faster more redundant statewide backbone. Click here to read the full story. [Download pdf]

Learning Spanish via the Internet
Spanish Spanish classes would not be available to the students at Discovery Middle School in Madison, AL without the distance learning technology made available through E-rate, the Internet connectivity provided by ASA/AREN, and the Toyota Distance Learning Program. Click here to read the full story. [Download pdf]