CIS Home > General Information > Billing Principles

CIS Billing Principles

  • Recognize that common and infrastructure related service should be supported through overhead.
  • That more exceptional or individualized services should be charged to projects.
  • The Institution as a whole has an interest in maintaining a safe and secure IT environment.
  • Computers and access to common IT services such as Email, Web and the Internet are essential to the performance of most people's job.
  • The "15min of free time" is eliminated in favor of more explicit enumeration of charges based upon ubiquity of services.
  • This is not about charging more or less, but about refining our policies

Help Desk

  • No charge for support from the CIS Help Desk for routine questions that can be answered quickly whether by Help Desk personnel or other CIS staff members. Help Desk support can be via an in person visit, phone call or email.
  • Requests that require more extensive work by a CIS staff member will be charged the same as they would if the request did not first go to Help Desk.
  • No charge for software or equipment loaned from the Help Desk as long as items are returned in good condition with a reasonable amount of time. Individuals may be charged for repair or replacement costs of lost or damaged equipment.

New computers

  • No direct charge for:
    • Initial specification for a reasonably standard system
    • For personal use computers, this includes the initial installation of current versions of an operating system, common office software (MS Office or equivalent), anti-virus and other common security software, Adobe reader, and job related task oriented software (for example Matlab for scientific and research staff, WHOIgrants for administrative staff). In some cases software licensing costs may apply.
    • For server class computer, this includes the installation and configuration of an operating system and file system.
    • Configuration to get connectivity to the WHOI network, mail servers, etc. and if a computer is portable VPN software.
    • Although time and effort may vary, a guideline will be that it is expected that the standards services for new computers will take up to three hours and that time beyond that will be charged.
  • Technical Assistance charges for:
    • Complex hardware configurations that require above average time such as raid arrays, multiple graphics cards, interfaces to instrumentation.
    • Complex software installations such as uncommon software packages, complex file sharing arrangements, or non-standard device drivers.
    • Installation of very old or pre-release software

Lifecycle support

  • Hardware repairs, upgrades, and maintenance of computer systems will be charged for at the TA rate plus the cost to CIS of parts. Parts and labor supplied or reimbursed through external warranty services may reduce repair costs. If operating system, application or data restoration services are required they will also be charged.
  • Software upgrades and maintenance will be charged for at the TA rate unless it is deemed that it is in the Institution's best interest that an upgrade be performed. This would generally be because of the network or computer security issue.
  • Most software is either automatically upgraded or easily done by the end-user. The CIS Help Desk will provide guidance to help with upgrades.
  • No charges for final disposal of WHOI owned computers including proper destruction of data storage media.


  • Computers with viruses, worms or other malware will be inspected without charge.
  • Up to 2 hours of work will be done to restore system integrity but after that charges will apply at the TA rate. The 2 hours grace period is based upon the current typical time to repair problems and may be adjusted as the nature of malware changes .
  • Widespread security issues or infections may require special consideration.

Network and phone access

  • No charges for help getting basic connectivity to the WHOI network or WHOI operated services.
  • No charges for problems related to network or IT infrastructure failures.
  • No charges for phone repairs unless there are obvious signs of deliberate abuse of the phone.
  • Cost recovery for individual communication expenses, such as long distance phone calls, initially charged to CIS.
  • No charges for help getting guests and visitors connected to the WHOI network unless there are unusual hardware or software problems on that person's computer which cannot be resolved in a reasonable amount of time. If extra work is required then a project number will be require from the WHOI person hosting the guest or visitor.

Network and phone connections

  • All offices, labs and other workspaces will be provided with a sufficient number of network connections to enable basic network and communications needs as part of the general WHOI infrastructure.
  • Additional standard 1 gigabit, copper Ethernet connections will be provided at a fixed rate per connection.
  • Higher speed or fiber optic connections will be provided on a time and materials basis. The availability of these connections may be limited by overall network capacity and performance considerations.
  • Additional phones will provided at cost. If additional network connections are required to support an added phone then it will charged for at the standard connection rate.

Backup Services

  • CIS will charge an initial setup fee to enroll a computer into the backup system to recover TA time and licensing fees (if any).
  • No charge for a "typical" amount of data backed up.
  • In the future there will be a volume based additional charge for larger amounts of data to recover costs of the additional storage media used.
  • At this time the details of the charging structure is still to be determined and there are no additional charges beyond the initial setup fee.
  • Extremely large file system may require special arrangements for backup or other forms of data protection and will be charged on a time and materials basis.

Programming services

  • No charge for web hosting and FTP accounts and a reasonable amount of file storage space in the CIS servers.
  • Programming services will be billed at the TA rate.
  • Whenever possible for non-trivial tasks the requestor and the programmer should agree to a work plan and estimated number of hours prior to the start of a project. Up to two hours of non-billed time will be allowed for this.

Computer room hosting

  • Computer room hosting space will be charged as a one-time fee based upon the amount of space used in a CIS supplied rack.
    • The fee is calculated as a pro-rated share of the cost of the rack, UPS support, KVM and cables.
  • Racks owned by research or administrative group can be placed in the computer room without charge as long as they are full or nearly full with computer equipment and space is available.
    • In such cases the owner is responsible for providing their own UPS protection and paying for any electrical connections that are required to provide power to the rack.
  • Network connections will be charged separately for both hosted and self-provided racks.

Group Training Facility Use

  • A usage fee will be charged to cover CIS cost in maintaining the room and the computers in it.
  • If CIS assistance is requested to install special software, reconfigure the room or to monitor the room during a training session, those services will be charged at the TA rate.
  • CIS may offer training classes and will charge a fee to recover costs.