Wilmette Library Pays $246K To Replace Servers, Renew Network Contract


WILMETTE, IL — The Wilmette Public Library board voted last week to approve contracts with its longtime information technology contractor totaling more than $246,000.

The two agreements with Downers Grove-based Computer View Inc., both unanimously approved by library trustees, include the cost of replacing the library’s servers and renewing a two-year contract to manage its computer network.

The previous two-year comprehensive network management agreement, which expires at the end of June, was for $130,500 — $64,600 for the first year and $65,900 for the second year.

The new contract totals $158,400 — $77,200 for 2022-23 and $81,200 for the fiscal year ending in June 2024.

Library Director Anthony Auston said the district had been working with Computer View since at least 1996. He said higher annual cost of the new contract reflected a combination of inflation and the increase from 176 to 221 devices on the library’s network.

“Our network is growing. Part of that is due in part to the fact that we’ve just expanded our wireless infrastructure here within the last few weeks, and there are additional access points, and those are obviously additional devices,” Auston said.

“We’ve added a number of laptops as part of our remote work agreements that we’ve done this past couple of years, so obviously the size of our network has grown,” the library director told trustees at last week’s meeting. “You’ll see that, in addition to what we’re seeing, across all the contracts that we’re reviewing with this cycle, that there are obviously some [Consumer Price Index] increases that are inherent with some of the increases.”

The other contract approved by the board allocates about $88,000 to cover the replacement of two servers, which Computer View installed in 2016. After five years, the hardware warranty must be extended every year. And, according to a library staff memo, it is expected to increase annually until Hewlett Packard Enterprise stops providing support for the servers in 2025.

Roxy Poluchowicz, a principal at Computer View, said the new servers will allow the library to expand its capacity, and the two-year network management contract meant it would only have to pay for the cost of hardware.

“Over time, technology does tend to go down in price,” Poluchowicz said. “However, we’ve seen that with the chip shortages overall in the industry, prices of components are shooting up. How long that will last, we don’t know.”

William Marcus, a project manager for Computer View, was asked about the biggest cybersecurity threats faced by library ahead of the April 19 vote.

“It’s definitely going to be email and the end user — because as much anti-spam we put in there, as much anti-virus you put in there, they’re getting so good at mimicking an Amazon email, a Chase Bank email that some do slip through,” Marcus said.

“It’s really on the end user at that point to be able to recognize that ‘Hey, you know, I’m clicking on this link, and it’s not taking me to chase.com, it’s taking me to somewhere else,’ or, ‘You know what, I didn’t withdraw anything from my bank account, why is it telling me I did and I need to log in?,'” he said. “It’s all about kind of using your own intuition and, and thinking about, you know, ‘Did the [library] director really send me this email asking me to buy Amazon gift cards? I mean, why would he want you to buy Amazon gift cards?'”



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