Brewster Academy Blogs



Google Drive File Replaces Google

Google Drive File Stream:

What and Why?

Google is replacing their desktop Google Drive Application with a new one called: Google Drive File Stream. This process will replace your old version with the new one!

Google Drive has become a great place for our users to store all of their Google or Non-Google files. They are safe, secure and easy to access from many devices. However, Google Drive (online) is NOT what we’re talking about here, only the application on your computer that synchronizes a Google Drive folder with the online Google Drive. The new app works just like the old one, yet it will no longer store and syncing all of that same data on your computer, freeing up huge amounts of space.  It also allows you to access the new “Team Drives” we’re putting in place.

It is IMPORTANT to note that the old application will be shut down in March. If you like to use this desktop application it is critical you perform this upgrade before then.  IT will force this update before March Break.

Continue reading “Google Drive File Replaces Google”

Sync your Portal and Computer passwords with Enterprise Connect

What and Why?

For years Brewster has not synchronized your computer login password with any other Brewster service. This has caused much confusion as users are required to remember several different passwords to access the tools that we need to use every day. Our deployment of Enterprise Connect resolves this issue by synchronizing your computers log in password with your Brewster Active Directory (Portal) password. We’ve been using this with the students since the beginning of the year, and the reduction in students forgetting their computer login passwords has dropped dramatically. It will also allow you to more easily change your Brewster Passwords (Portal, Moodle, Gmail, Wireless, PaperCut, Computer, etc.).  Many faculty and staff users are already using this technology already and love it!

Continue reading “Sync your Portal and Computer passwords with Enterprise Connect”

Computer Encryption with FileVault 2

Full Computer Encryption (FV2)

What and Why?

As we know, laptops may be lost, stolen or otherwise end up in the hand of those who should not have access to our data. To this end, Brewster Academy will be encrypting all personally assigned, Brewster laptops (our phones are already encrypted). While I could get into great explanations about what encryption is, the long and the short of it is that it will prevent data from being taken from the laptop while it is shut off or sleeping. Right now, if your computer is lost or stolen, your password can be circumvented, allowing your data to be downloaded to another device.

Continue reading “Computer Encryption with FileVault 2”

Stay safe online: Use HTTPS Everywhere.

Securing the internet is REALLY hard! There are SO MANY things to pay attention to! One of those things you need to pay attention to is whether the site you’re going to uses HTTPS (A Secured/registered site) or just HTTP: (An unsecured site that cannot prove it is who it says it is). This means that is safe and may NOT be. Continue reading “Stay safe online: Use HTTPS Everywhere.”

Add a Thesaurus to Google Docs!

Have you ever wanted a simple, yet powerful thesaurus built right into Google Docs? Thesaurus Pro is a free add-on to Google Docs that’s both free AND well reviewed. Here’s how to add it: Continue reading “Add a Thesaurus to Google Docs!”

What to Do if You Spill Liquid on Your Device!

It happens! Here in IT, we see our community members dealing with liquid spills on their laptops and phones all the time.  Unfortunately, many people make the same mistakes that ultimately lead to the death of their laptop, phone or other electronic device. Here are a few quick tips to help you survive this disaster! Continue reading “What to Do if You Spill Liquid on Your Device!”

Upload Video to YouTube

Did you know that you have a YouTube account? It’s part of your Brewster Google Suite of Apps just like Google Docs and Gmail. Taking video from your computer and uploading it to YouTube is rather simple. Here’s how to do it from scratch! Continue reading “Upload Video to YouTube”

Add Video to a Google Slides Presentation

Creating a slide presentation is nearly as common as reading e-mail here at BA. As we continue to focus on using the Google Suite of applications (Docs, Sheets, YouTube, etc), many find themselves using Google Slides (Google’s version of Keynote/PowerPoint). Here are some basic instructions on how to embed videos to your presentation. Continue reading “Add Video to a Google Slides Presentation”

Advanced Google Search

When most of us want to find something on the web we simply go to, type a phrase or question and hope that we get all of our answers on the first page. Unfortunately, that happens a LOT less than we’d like.

A LONG time ago, people used to memorize something called “boolean” expressions (OR, AND and NOT, for example)  to really find ‘exactly’ what they wanted but they were hard to remember. To help with this, Google built a very easy to use “Advanced” search tool.

First, here’s how to find it. You can visit the advanced search page directly at or you can choose it from the main google search page (

  • Visit
  • Select “Settings” in the lower right-hand corner of the page

Screenshot 2016-05-05 11.13.53.png

  • Select “Advanced Search”

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  • You will now find yourself at Google’s Advanced Search page, which looks like this:

Screenshot 2016-05-05 11.10.31.png

Ok, so now you’ve found the proper page, how do you use it? The good news, just read the descriptions next to each field and you’ll get a good idea on what text to enter. The real trick is to use a number of these fields to narrow down the very best results you can find on the internet. For example, doing a PBL on Eggplant but you’re tired of getting eggplant parmesan recipes?

try the following:w

  • In “All these words:” type “eggplant”
  • In “none of these words:” type “parmesan”
  • Click “Advanced Search” at the bottom.

The results are dramatically different. There are many uses for these advanced search options so give some of them a try!


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