For Personal Computers

Minimum Recommended Technology Requirements

  • Internet connectivity with at least 3Mbps download and 3Mbps upload speeds
  • Computer: Windows PC or Mac
  • Internet browser: Firefox or Chrome browser (Mac users may find that Firefox is the preferred browser)
  • HD webcam
  • Microphone and speakers (or headphones with microphone)

Engineering Hardware Recommendations

  • 12th Gen Intel Core i7 Processor
  • Windows 11 Operation System
  • 16GB RAM (higher RAM preferred as it runs faster)
  • 1TB SSD Drive

General Software 

Student discounts are available, please see InsideCBU.

Mac vs. PC

Currently, engineering computer labs and laptops are Windows PC based. In addition, some engineering software (SolidWorks and some EE simulation software in particular) only run on a Windows PC. For this reason, use of a Windows PC based system is highly recommended. 
Some applications such as: AutoCAD and Excel both have applications for Mac, but the functionality of these programs is not always the same as their PC counterparts. With the limitations of Macs, it is possible to run parallels on your Mac that will allow you to install Windows 10 allowing for the use of Windows based software applications. However, it should be noted that the cost of upgrading your Mac to run Windows 10 should be factored into your estimated expense (Parallels for Mac: Windows 10:

Desktop vs. Laptop

Laptops are great for portability and will run most of today’s computer applications. CBU has a wireless network covering the academic buildings, the library, dorm lobbies, and all campus residences.

Desktops give you more power for the money, and are more reliable. They generally have a faster CPU, and are capable of more internal devices. They are also more upgradeable. It is really a personal choice.

Limitation of Chromebooks

The rise of popularity of Chromebooks necessitates that we inform students that most engineering software does not run on these devices and capabilities of certain plug-ins such as Zoom or WebEx are limited. In deciding on a computer, Chromebooks are not recommend if you desire to have full access to software and programs on your personal device. Chromebooks are not recommended for engineering students.

Computer Usage within the College of Engineering

Laptop Check Out

If the need for a computer is outside a lab time or there are not enough laptops in a lab, a laptop can be checked out from the third-floor student worker (must be a COE student). CBU ID required and will be held while the computer is in use. Laptops may be checked out from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Laptops are for use within the building and must be returned same day, after use.

Students are reminded to NOT save any work to the device, as they are wiped after every session. Please remember to use a USB.


For any questions, please contact Ron Raghoo at or (951) 552-8664.

Contact the College of Engineering

Dean: Dr. Philip Van Haaster
Administrative Assistant: Kiana Bjur
Phone: (951) 343-4972

8432 Magnolia Avenue
Riverside, CA 92504