Joining the College of Engineering? We have collected several resources onto this page to help you get off to a successful start!
- Computer Recommendations
- Available Software
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
We don’t require it, but many students opt to buy their own laptop. Listed below are two tables of information.
This first table is a specifications comparison table. This table is useful as you try to pick a laptop from the myriad of options available. To read it, select a component from the laptop you are considering then locate the corresponding row for that component in the table. Work your way across the row until your component matches what we have listed in our table. Then go to the top and you can see if we consider that a good, better, or best component. For example, the laptop you’re looking at has an Intel Core i7 processor. Look in the Processor row and work your way across and you can see we consider an Intel Core i7 to be the best processor you can get.
|Processor||Intel Core i3||Intel Core i5||Intel Core i7
|Memory||4 GB||8 GB||16 GB|
|Storage||128 GB||256 GB||512+ GB
|Video Card||Integrated||1-2 GB nVidia GeForce or AMD Radeon||2+ GB nVidia GeForce/Quadro or AMD Radeon/FirePro|
|Warranty||90 Days||1 Year||3 Years + Accidental Damage
|Typical Use Case||Web browsing, Microsoft Office-type applications, connecting to a remote computer||Running engineering applications for software programming, scripting, and development IDEs||Running engineering applications for 2D and 3D modeling
This second table is a list of specific models if you want to pick something we have already verified as having full support and we know works well with our software portfolio. We have partnered with Dell and Apple to have the following models for sale at TechCyte at the ISU Bookstore at the Memorial Union.
|DELL XPS 13||DELL XPS 15||MACBOOK PRO 13”
TOUCHBAR AND TOUCH ID
|MACBOOK PRO 15”
TOUCHBAR AND TOUCH ID
|Processor||7th Gen Intel Core i5||7th Gen Intel Core i7||7th Gen Intel Core i5||7th Gen Intel Core i7|
|Memory||8 GB||16 GB||8 GB||16 GB|
|Storage||256 GB SSD||512 GB SSD||256 GB SSD||512 GB SSD|
|Video Card||Integrated||NVIDIA Discrete||Integrated||AMD Discrete|
|Warranty||4 Year + Accidental Damage||4 Year + Accidental Damage||3 Year (AppleCare)||3 Year (AppleCare)|
Please keep in mind these recommendations are just that, recommendations. If you purchase a laptop with other specifications, it will still work! If you find your laptop can’t handle a particular Engineering application, we have remote options available to shift that burden from you to us.
If you have any questions about specific items listed here, please don’t hesitate to Contact Us! We’d be happy to answer any of your questions.
We provide many software titles for you to install on your personal computer at no cost. It is important to stress you do not have to download and install all of these. We recommend you do not download and install the specialty applications until explicitly instructed to do so by your instructor. Some of these are quite complex and you may not actually need them.
Once semester starts, you can also find all of this content in your own CyBox space by logging in to CyBox. You will see a folder called College of Engineering Software Downloads (Students) which contains a duplicate of this page for ease of access. This content is only shared with your CyBox account so it is not consuming any of your own space.
Please note that this will not show up until the first day of class for a semester. We do not receive final class lists until the start of each semester so cannot grant access until we know who all is taking an Engineering class.
|Autodesk Products||Download||Register with AutoDesk to access AutoDesk titles.|
|Bentley Microstation||Log in|
|ChemBioDraw||Download||Enter your iastate.edu email address to authorize the site license.|
|EndNote||Use EndNote Web|
|JMP||Download||Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to get help|
|Microsoft Office||Download||Log in then click Manage installs|
|Other Microsoft Products||Download|
|OriginPro||Download||Purchase a 6 or 12-month license|
|PTC MathCAD||Download||Purchase MathCAD at a discounted rate|
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) General
We don’t recommend one particular tablet/smartphone over another. They all have their place and it ultimately comes down to personal preference.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Apple/Mac Specific
- Multiple computer labs across the college you have access to, some 24/7.
- Install VMware Fusion and create a virtual machine running Windows 10.
- Access our remote Windows sessions through VMware View.
- Install Apple Boot Camp and install Windows 10 on a portion of your Mac hard drive.