Technology Requirements 2022 (Archive)

The requirements below are for PharmD students entering in Summer 2022. Past requirements are available in the archive section below.

Important Note on MacOS Ventura (13) (IT announced on January 23, 2023):

UCSF IT has verified compatibility with standard UCSF applications and macOS Ventura.  IT Field Services will officially support macOS 13.x (Ventura), in addition to macOS 12.x (Monterey) and macOS 11.x (Big Sur), starting on Monday, January 23, 2023 at 8:00 AM. 

Apple’s Mac Studio models with M1 Max and M1 Ultra chips are also fully supported when upgraded to macOS Ventura, which is now required for full compatibility with Symantec Endpoint Protection after Apple released a critical OS fix for macOS Ventura only. 

PharmD technology requirements extend and/or supersede campus requirements:

  • All PharmD students are required to meet the UCSF campus Technology Requirements for Students.
  • The requirements defined on this page are inclusive of campus requirements. Please use this document as the PharmD technology requirements extend and/or supersede campus requirements.

Deadlines to complete requirements (subject to change):

  • Students are required to make device purchases by June 17, 2022. If you are in a special circumstance in which you are unable to purchase a device by this deadline and need extended time, please contact Alexa Tan ([email protected]).
  • Students are required to complete all requirements including the installation of all software by June 17, 2022.
  • Technology Readiness Device Checks will be scheduled before online orientation to verify hardware specifications and installation of software. If you had issues with any software, assistance can be provided during this time.


UCSF is a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) campus and requires all students to own a personal device for UCSF-related activities. The purpose of these requirements is to ensure that devices meet or exceed a set of standards that will allow students to participate effectively in the UCSF technology ecosystem. Technology will be an integral component of your UCSF education. Having adequate hardware is worth the investment--your focus should be on your education, not dealing with technical issues caused by dated or underpowered devices.

These requirements also ensure that incoming students have installed all security software required by the UCSF Minimum Security Standards. UCSF students have a legal and ethical responsibility to preserve and protect the privacy, confidentiality, and security of all confidential information, both patient and non-patient related. Security regulations are dictated by the Federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH), other Federal and California privacy laws, as well as UCOP and UCSF Policies, and Medical Center Administrative Policies and Procedures.


  1. Laptop requirements
  2. iPad and keyboard requirement
  3. Software requirements
  4. Set up UCSF email
  5. Internet requirement

1. Laptop requirements

You must own a laptop computer that meets the following minimum specifications. If something is not listed as required, we offer no specific recommendations and suggest that you make purchase decisions based on your budget, features, and preference for Mac or PC.

  Recommended Minimum
Description This configuration will likely provide adequate performance for 3 to 4 years. This laptop will likely not provide adequate performance through the end of your program.
Purchase Date Purchased within the past 2 years (recommended). Earlier models acceptable if minimum requirements below are met.
Operating System

Windows 11 (Pro, Education, or Enterprise)

macOS Ventura 13.x

See recommended Mac or PC models that meet this criteria below.

Windows 10 (Pro, Education, or Enterprise)

macOS Big Sur 11.x or macOS Monterey 12.x


Intel Core i7 quad-core processor
(9th, 10th, or 11th Generation)

Apple silicon M1 or M1 Pro chips, M2 chips 

Intel Core i5 dual-core processor
(7th Generation)
Memory (RAM) 16 GB or more 8 GB
Solid State Drive (SSD) 512 GB or more 256 GB
Webcam Must have functioning webcam either built-in to laptop or external
Headphones with Microphone Must have a headset comprised of headphones and microphone. Can be USB, 3.5mm jack, wireless/Bluetooth, or built-in depending on computer configuration.
Warranty 3 years parts and labor with on-site or in-store support. No specific requirement.

No ultra-low-power or budget-class processors

These processors are found in some ultrabooks, 2-in-1, fanless, and budget laptops. Computers with these processors do not meet our requirements.

  • No Intel: Y-series i5/i7 (e.g. i7-7Y75), i3, Core M, Celeron, Pentium Silver, Pentium Gold
  • No AMD: Ryzen 3, A-series, E-Series, FX, Athlon

No tablets or Chromebooks

An iPad or Android Tablet alone does not meet our requirements; the use of a tablet as a companion device is acceptable. The use of Chromebooks at UCSF raises significant security concerns; if you have one, we recommend that you do not use it for anything involving UCSF business, research, or studies.

Looking to purchase a new device?

Device Recommendations

MacBooks (Apple model comparison tool)

  • MacBook Pro, 14-inch (M1 Pro, 2021)
  • MacBook Pro, 16-inch (M1 Pro, 2021)
  • MacBook Pro, 13-inch (M1, 2020)
  • MacBook Air, 13-inch (M1, 2020)


Important information for international students

UCSF highly recommends that international students wait until arriving in the United States before purchasing hardware and software. There are several important reasons based on prior experience, including:

  • Newest hardware is more readily available in the United States.
  • Costs are typically lower.
  • Warranty may not cover service in the United States.
  • Certain software does not work with foreign versions of operating systems.

Always wait to upgrade to new major versions of operating systems

UCSF has many computer systems, and it's impossible for all of our systems to be compatible with new major versions of operating systems on the day they become available. Consequently, we strongly discourage you from upgrading until UCSF Information Technology has sent an all-clear message to the community. If you upgrade before the all-clear, UCSF IT will support you as best it can, but until a permanent solution is in place, you might lose certain functionality.

2. iPad and keyboard (recommended)

A. Apple iPad or iPad Pro (recommended)

  1. 9.7-inch display or larger
  2. 2 GB of memory or more
  3. 64 GB of storage or larger
  4. Supports iOS 15+

The following models meet this criteria (current models are bolded):

  • iPad Airs series
    • iPad Air 5th-generation (2021) | 10.9-inch | 64 or 256 GB
    • iPad Air 4th-generation (2020) | 10.9-inch | 64 or 256 GB
    • iPad Air 3rd-generation (2019) | 10.5-inch | 64 or 256 GB
  • iPad (standard series)
    • iPad 9th-generation (2021) | 10.2-inch | 64, 256 GB
    • iPad 8th-generation (2020) | 10.2-inch | 128 GB
    • iPad 7th-generation (2019) | 10.2-inch | 128 GB
    • iPad 6th-generation (2018) | 9.7-inch | 128 GB
    • iPad 5th-generation (2017) | 9.7-inch | 128 GB
  • iPad Pros 12.9-inch series
    • iPad Pro 5th-generation (2021)| 128, 256, 512 GB, 1 TB, or 2TB
    • iPad Pro 4th-generation (2020) | 128, 256, 512 GB, or 1 TB
    • iPad Pro 3rd-generation (2019) | 64, 256, 512 GB, or 1 TB
    • iPad Pro 2nd-generation (2018) | 64, 256, or 512 GB
    • iPad Pro 1st generation (2017) |128, 256 GB
  • iPad Pros 11-inch series
    • iPad Pro 3rd-generation (2021) | 128, 256, 512 GB, 1 TB, or 2TB
    • iPad Pro 2nd-generation (2020) | 128, 256, 512 GB, or 1 TB
    • iPad Pro 1st-generation (2018) | 64, 256, 512 GB, or 1 TB

If you do not already own an iPad that meets these criteria, we recommend you buy the most recently released version of the iPad. We offer no other recommendation from this list and suggest that you make purchase decisions based on your budget, features, and preferences. If you plan on using your iPad as your primary device for taking notes, you may want to consider getting an iPad with larger screen and if you want the ability to use an Apple Pencil, please check for compatibility at

B. iPad keyboard (recommended)

  • There are a large variety of keyboard manufacturers and designs; we offer no specific recommendation and suggest that you make purchase decisions based on your budget, features, and preferences.
  • You should expect to pay $100 to $200 for a quality keyboard and should consider the following features:
    • Folio-style or clamshell: a clamshell case that firmly holds your iPad in place will allow you to work more easily when desk space is limited. Folio cases tend to be lighter and cheaper but typically rely on a groove or magnet to hold you iPad in place and offer only a single propped-up angle to view the display.
    • Always-on or removable: Some cases make it difficult to use your iPad as just a tablet. If you plan on using the keyboard infrequently, you may want to consider a case that can be easily removed.
    • Bluetooth or Smart Keyboard: Certain iPads support Smart Keyboards, unlike Bluetooth keyboards, you don't need to pair or turn on your Smart Keyboard.
    • Typing experience: To varying degrees, all iPad keyboards offer smaller-than normal keys in a compact layout. You will need to be comfortable typing on your keyboard and we emphasize that you take this into consideration.

3. Software requirements

You must have the following software installed on your computer. You may be prevented from connecting to the UCSF network without having all the required security software installed.

# Software Description and downloads

Operating System


Mac Users: please upgrade to macOS Monterey 13.x

Windows Users: Please upgrade to Windows 10/11. If you have Windows 10/11 Home edition, you will need to upgrade to Windows 10/11 Education.

  • Students can obtain one free license per student for either Windows 10 Education or Windows 11 Education from UCSF OnTheHub. Click on the General Windows option and locate the Windows 10 Education or Windows 11 Education version.
  • Once your one free license is used, it cannot be transferred to another laptop. Please ensure you use your license only on the laptop you will use for pharmacy school.
  • If you have a laptop that has been purchased with Windows 11 Home, upgrade to Windows 11 Education.
  • Be sure to keep a copy of the product key as it is only available online for a short period of time. To change your version of Windows, search for "Activation" from the Start menu and click the Activation shortcut. Click Change product key, enter your new product key, and follow the on-screen instructions.

Device Encryption


UCSF requires the use of the following file-based encryption applications that prevent unauthorized persons from accessing legally protected information.

Mac Users: Download and run the installer from "Mac Encryption - MacOS" to enroll your Mac into Jamf Pro at UCSF that will manage and validate your computer's FileVault encryption for proper compliance. Follow these enrollment instructions.

Windows Users: Download and install "Dell Encryption Enterprise (DEE) BitLocker Manager - Windows 64-bit (x64)". Follow the instructions that appear in order to progress through the installer,


IBM BigFix


BigFix is used for inventory, software and patch management.

Mac and Windows Users: BigFix is included with the Device Encryption installers above.


ForeScout SecureConnect


SecureConnector is a Network Access Control (NAC) agent used to determine if your system meets the minimum security requirements before connecting your device to the network.

Do not select the dissolvable version. Installation is rapid, taskbar icon will be visible upon completion.

Mac Users: Download and install "ForeScout SecureConnector - Mac OS X"

Windows Users: Download and install "ForeScout SecureConnector - Windows 32-bit/64-bit"


Symantec Endpoint Protection (SEP)


SEP includes anti-virus, anti-malware, host intrusion prevention system, and client firewall (PC only).

SEP is provided free of charge to students. Uninstall all other antivirus software and Disable Windows Defender. No need to run multiple programs or purchase a separate license.

Mac Users: Download and install "SEP - macOS 10.15.4 - 12.x"

Windows Users: Download and install "SEP - Windows (64bit)"


Pulse Secure


Pulse Secure is Virtual Private Network (VPN) client. When off campus, Pulse Secure connects your computer to the UCSF network in order to protect the transfer of all data. VPN connection is required for access to certain library resources and needed to send or receive your UCSF email when using desktop applications such as Outlook and Apple Mail.

Mac Users: Download and install "Pulse Secure - Dual Authentication - Mac OS X"

Windows Users: Download and install "Pulse Secure - Dual Authentication - Windows"


CipherCloud for Box


CipherCloud scans UCSF Box and automatically encrypts all file formats that contain matches to UCSF PHI. You will know a file is encrypted when it is renamed with a .ccsecure extension. The CipherCloud agent is required to open these encrypted files.

Mac Users: Download and install "CipherCloud for Box and OneDrive - Mac OS X"

Windows Users: Download and install "CipherCloud for Box and OneDrive - Windows"


Office 365 ProPlus


UCSF provides Office 365 ProPlus for Mac and PC users which includes desktop versions of Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Publisher (PC only), and Access (PC only). You can install Office on up to 5 PCs or Macs, 5 tablets, and 5 smartphones. The Office installer can be accessed by following the instructions below:

Mac and Windows Users:

  1. Navigate to
  2. Sign in with your MyAccess credentials
  3. Select Microsoft Office 365 from the list
  4. Follow prompts to download Office 365 Mac OS X or Office 365 Windows

Google Chrome


Some of our required software or websites may be incompatible with your preferred web browser. If this happens, you will need to use an alternative browser to access that particular resource. We encourage you to become comfortable using more than one browser.

Mac and Windows Users:


Mozilla Firefox



VLC Media Player


VLC programs enable you to view and listen to a variety of media files.

Mac and Windows Users:




You are required to install Examplify on your laptop and use this software for all computer-based exams.

Login information for Examplify will be emailed to you during Orientation.

Mac and Windows Users: Download Examplify version 2.9.2.

Examplify Windows Installer (2.9.2)

Examplify Mac OS X Installer (2.9.2)


Citrix Workspace


Citrix is used to access our electronic medical record system called APeX.

Mac Users: Download and install "Citrix Workspace App 2203.1 for Mac"

Windows Users: Download and install "Citrix Workspace app 2202 for Windows"


Zoom Client


UCSF utilizes Zoom as its web conferencing solution and it is an integral part of delivering remote education.

Mac and Windows users: Download Zoom 5.10+

Download and install "Zoom Client for Meetings"

Or, Zoom for Macs with Apple Silicon chips (Installer, 29 MB)


Duo Mobile


Duo is a two-factor authentication application. VPN and online email access requires a second verification on another device to authenticate your identity. Duo provides several authentication options, but the most convenient is through the Duo Mobile smartphone app.

If you are accessing your email for the first time and you are not at UCSF, you will be prompted to enroll in Duo when you log in at Follow the on-screen prompts to enroll.

Android App
iOS App


Hitachi ID Mobile Access App


The Hitachi App allows you access to change forgotten passwords and reset your account if you are locked out due to multiple failed login attempts.

  1. Install app from App Store or Google Play
  2. On your computer, go to and login --> click on "register mobile devices --> "Add new" --> "Register" --> QR code appears
  3. On your phone, open Hitachi app --> scan the QR code to register your phone

Android App
iOS App




Clinical drug information system that can be accessed online or downloaded as a mobile app from the App Store or Google Play Store.

UCSF School of Pharmacy will provide you with a mobile app license when classes begin.

Android App
iOS App

4. Set up UCSF email

Before arriving at campus, you must be able to send/receive messages from your UCSF Email. Use of this email account is required for all communications involving UCSF business, research, and studies. You are expected to check this account periodically to stay apprised of all program and campus messages. In addition to being able to send/receive messages, you are required to enroll in the UCSF Password Management Tool and change your original password that was distributed by the Registrar. Please see First Time Login instructions on the Technology Introduction for Students.

Your use of UCSF Email is governed by the University of California Electronic Communications Policy. Additionally:

  • The use of third-party email services is not approved by UCSF--including the forwarding of email to an outside service (e.g., Yahoo and Gmail).
  • Do not share your own or other people's email account or password.
  • Don’t share our mailing list email addresses with people who are not affiliated with UCSF.
  • Do not use your email account for unlawful activities, commercial purposes, personal financial gain, chain letters, unsolicited marketing, or letter bombs.
  • When you send a confidential email, use Secure Email. Regular email is not encrypted by default.

5. Internet requirement

You are required to have a home internet connection. Your connection speeds must be sufficient for high quality group video calling on Zoom and viewing videos on Mediasite: Dedicated (not shared throughout a household) 1.5 Mbps upload and 5 Mbps download is highly recommended.

To test your connection go to:

If internet service is included with your student housing, this meets your internet requirement. All other students are responsible for selecting an Internet Service Provider (ISP) and purchasing service. You are responsible for the cost of this service, which averages about $60 per month. The largest providers in San Francisco are Sonic, AT&T, and XFINITY. Availability, speed, and pricing can vary depending on where you live and level of service you prefer.

If you’re not in campus housing and you’re using wireless at home, you must configure your wireless network with WPA encryption to comply with UCSF policy. If you’re uncertain about how to do this or how to confirm it, ask a knowledgeable friend or contact your internet service provider or the vendor of your wireless access point.


Technology requirements for student pharmacists entering in: