I read the previous discussions regarding AD design and naming conventions (ended in 2006), but I am still looking for the ultimate naming convention for students:
Year Group-Initial + first 4 characters of last name
eg Peter Black in Year 7 will be: Y7-PBlac
The problem (and blessing in disguise) with this approach is that we recreate ALL 1500 students every year. The blessing is that we delete all students accounts and their home directories (mp3, jpg files ) every year.
Another plus for this naming convention, is that all student home directories are listed together, and makes it easy for the Teachers to get to the correct student home directories.
Creating the new accounts is also no problem: We export all student names from SIMS to csv - using UserCommander (from SystemTools), create all account including home directories in a few minutes.
The only serious flaw here is the private share of the student Home Directories. This is a manual process after the creation of the student accounts for 1500 students!
A few limitations because we are an international school:
1. We do not have full intakes from feeder schools - we have constant flow of students, in and out, as their parents start work in the country and leave after contract completion. So year of intake does not really make sense.
2. Having Arabic names converted to English makes for some interesting spelling differences within one family. Three siblings in one family could have their last names (in their passports) spelled differently.
3. We only give personal user accounts from Year 3 and up - Lower primary students have a Registration Group (Class) account.
That should be enough info to bore everybody to death!
Any bright ideas on a better naming scheme or how to automate the private share creation??
I've adopted the policy of the High School we feed in to. Theirs is entry year,lastname,first initial first name e.g.
10blogsf. We use the year they leave us so they keep the same username when they move up. I would suggest avoiding hyphens in names.
You are correct - we remove all hyphens ( - or ' and spaces) from their first and last names, then put it back in the user name!! That is one thing we should get rid of! Leaving year could be a plan - even if it is a probable leaving year, as our students come and go all the time!
I would have loved to be able to go for something simple!! No Seriously!!
Problem is being in an Arabic country - halve my students have the same first name! (hence the most used name in the world) and 80% have an "AL-" or "EL-" as the first part of their last name! (eg AL-Makhoul)
Splitting them by Year group makes it significantly easier.
We used to use YearOfEntrySurnameInitial = 07SmithB
We have now moved to initials+admission number. We changed this so they have the same username on the VLE and the network. It also means their email addresses are fairly anonymous now where as before you knew their surname, initial and which year they were in.
This is the first year we have allocated passwords. I took the first 5 letters of the lastname and added a sequential digits in front 1-180 for each year. Miss Williams was not impressed with her password
Because we have used Winsuite up to now, they have simply used a drop down menu to select their username. Having to type their name and a password seems to beyond a lot of them!