Office of Information Technology Services (ITS) was established on September 25, 2007 through Assumption University Order 161/2007. ITS combines the operations and responsibilities of the former three centers, namely, AuNet Center, Computing Center and Information System Development Center, into a single Office.
Early Computing at ABAC
Assumption University or ABAC was founded in 1969 as Assumption School of Business. It was formally established in 1972 and known as Assumption Business Administration College (ABAC). It was accredited by the Ministry of Education and Ministry of University Affairs in 1975. In 1990, it was granted university status by Ministry of University Affairs and became known as Assumption University.
ABAC acquired its first set of computers in 1980. The two Apple II microcomputers were supplemented with two RadioShack TRS-80 in 1981 to be used by the students in the Department of Business Computer. In 1982, two Onyx computers with UNIX operating system were purchased for academic purposes. From 1982 to 1986, many more Apple II and IBM PC's were purchased mainly for students' uses and a few for administrative work.
In 1983, Computer Center was established to support ABAC in student computer labs, computer application developments and maintenance. In 1987, ABAC acquired its first IBM 9370 mini computer (8 MB main memory and 2,550 MB storage) to be used for students' registration. As the number of students increased, many more 80286 PC's were acquired. By 1989, the IBM 9370 was considered not fast enough to handle students' registration so an IBM 3083 mainframe computer was purchased in 1990 for this purpose and the IBM 9370 was dedicated to academic and research uses.
In the same year (1990), the Computer Center of ABAC was divided into two sections, the Computing Center to serve the administrative needs and Computer Lab to serve the academic needs. From 1990 to 1994, many more PC's, Macintoshes, IBM AS/400, SUN workstations, and HP workstations were purchased by the University.
Network and The Internet
In 1991, ABAC first connected to the Internet through a 2400-bps dial-up connection with Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) using a Sun Sparc ELC as the server. The server exchanged Emails with AIT twice a day, which further relayed the data to Australia and the worldwide Internet. Shortly afterwards, following the announcement of the first permanent Internet link connecting Chulalongkorn University (CU) with UUNET through a 9600-bps leased line, ABAC established its first permanent Internet connection through a 9600-bps leased line connection with CU. The server was upgraded to a Sun Sparc Classic.
The first experimental backbone of ABAC was the RG-58 link between Computing Center (C7) and Computer Lab (E5). The backbone ran IP and IPX. With the great potential of Internet and the need for campus-wide network, Prof.Dr. Srisakdi Charmonman, the Vice President of IT, proposed the establishment of Au Internet Center, which operated under the Internet Institute of Assumption University. The center was later named AuNet Center and was responsible for the network and Internet infrastructure of the University.
The campus was completely connected in 1994 through an FDDI backbone and 10-Mbps Ethernet to the desktops. At the same time, Au leased a 64-kbps connection to UUNET in Virginia, USA, and became the first private Internet gateway in Thailand. Moreover, Au announced the policy to allow all Au students to use Internet, which suddenly increase the number of Internet users in Thailand from about 2,000 users to about 17,000 users. Au also operated as an Internet gateway for a number of K-12 schools using Datanet links for a few years until the commercial unit spun off to become KSC Commercial Internet company, the first private commercial ISP in Thailand. AuNet Center continued to provide networking and Internet services to the University.
The Demise of the Mainframe
As desktop computers and server-class computers became more powerful, the University decided to migrate all systems on IBM 3083 to server-class computers. It was a major transition from the traditional terminal-based application software to a more modern client-server based systems. The migration team was set up in 1997 and the large part of the applications were successfully migrated by the end of 1998. Part of the applications was based on Visual Basic while the other part was based on Java. Databases were managed by Informix, one of the highly promising DBMS during the time, running on a server computer from Sun Microsystems. All mainframe and mini computers were completely removed from the premise. A new center, Information System Development Center (ISDC), was set up to be responsible for all application software development of the University.
In September 2007, it was deemed appropriate to consolidate all services related to IT, which were formerly served by three different centers, into one administrative unit for efficiency. The new unit was then formed and called "Office of Information Technology Services."The new Office is responsible for computer network services and infrastructure, computer equipment, software and computer applications, and information system development.