NETLAB+ User Group Meeting, September 13, 2016

More than 60 community college faculty and administrators attended our first NETLAB+ User Group meeting last week. In case you missed it, we have the minutes and recorded video (available to members only) in this article.

Topics covered included:

  • NETLAB+ Virtual Edition Overview & Demo
  • How to Champion a NETLAB+ Regional Hub
  • BACCC NETLAB+ Update - Classroom Lab in the Cloud
  • ICT Instructor Professional Development Opportunities

Be sure to log into your NETLAB+ User Group account to view the webinar.

Meeting Minutes - Summaries

Shawn Monsen, Welcome

Introduction video - Members Only

Participants are encouraged to join the NETLAB+ User Group on the new website to receive meeting invitations, monthly newsletter and access to the user forum.

Visit the new website at for the latest virtual lab-related news and events, current NETLAB+ curriculum, information on obtaining funding, and NETLAB+ locations and college contacts.

Rich Weeks, CEO Network Development Group (NDG)

Rich Weeks Video - Members Only

Overview of NDG and NETLAB+

NDG partners with vendor programs to help academic institutions teach job skills needed in the IT industry.

NETLAB+ is a physical hardware appliance being used by 50 schools in CA; some are host sites, some access via a host site. Two platforms are available: NETLAB+ lab management and cloud-based labs/courses. With the NETLAB+ platform the college owns the equipment, so students don’t pay an extra fee. The cloud-based platform is set up as a subscription service and students are charged a fee.

NETLAB+ is designed to automate the lab environment. Institutions with NETLAB+ installations can host resources for other institutions.

NETLAB+ Virtual Edition (VE)

NETLAB+ VE is an upgraded version of NETLAB+ that allows institutions to run NETLAB+ as a virtual machine in a VMWare vSphere environment. Existing NETLAB+ members will have 12-month transition period in which they can run VE in parallel. License rights will automatically port as follows:

  • NETLAB+ Academic Edition (AE) will become 16 VE license
  • NETLAB+ Professional Edition (PE) will become 32 VE license

NETLAB+ VE has same pricing model as AE and PE. Blocks of 16 active pods can be added for $9,995 per block. 

New Content Available for NETLAB+ Customers

  • Palo Alto Networks Academy
  • Red Hat Academy
  • Support VMWare IT AcademyEMC Academic Alliance
  • Ethical Hacking lab library
  • Forensics lab library
  • Cisco Networking Academy

*Visit to trial labs – 30-day access for instructors

Steve Linthicum, DSN, ICT-Digital Media, Greater Sacramento Region

Steve Linthicum video - Members only

Colleges can position themselves to obtain funding allocated to regional projects for virtual labs like NETLAB+. Those interested can reach out to their CTE Deans and faculty, as faculty-driven projects get a lot of support.

Steve is preparing to submit a proposal for the continuation and expansion of the North/Far North NETLAB+ regional hub. He is surveying faculty to identify uses for NETLAB+ beyond the standard IT classes (e.g., Accounting classes using QuickBooks). He will also retrieve utilization numbers to show student use of the system.

Steve will share his application with the NETLAB+ User Group in an effort to develop more NETLAB+ hubs across the state. It may be possible to have a statewide NETLAB+ network if a series of regional hubs are funded and used.

Richard Grotegut, DSN, ICT-Digital Media, Bay Area Region

Richard Grotegut Video - Members Only

More than 20 colleges are connected and using the Bay Area Region NETLAB+ hub hosted at Cabrillo College.

Classroom Lab in the Cloud is being BETA tested in the region right now. This system is similar to computer lab on campus, where students can log in 24/7 and use a computer in the open lab to work on any application. Students can save their work by uploading it to the classroom instructor server.

Instructors interested in BETA testing the system should contact Richard at, 925-354-8785.

Karen Stanton, Western Academy Support & Training Center (WASTC)

Karen Stanton Video - Members Only

WASTC provides support to Cisco academies and offers Instructor professional development courses throughout the state.

Faculty Development Weeks are held each summer covering a variety of topics, including NETLAB+. NDG sends engineers and instructors to work with faculty during the week-long training sessions – one week held in the North, one week in the South. This summer’s dates are June 19-23 and June 26-30, 2017.

The 2017 Winter Educators’ Conference will be held at Cisco Headquarters in San Jose on January 5-6, 2017. NDG’s breakout sessions will be among the 50 different sessions available to attendees.

If you have a topic suggestion for future professional development trainings, or for more information about WASTC offerings, contact Karen Stanton at