Home‎ > ‎Internet Tools‎ > ‎

Google Apps

We are using Google Apps Standard Edition with the blacksburgskywarn.org domain.

Domain Services

The following services are part of Google Apps Standard Edition:
  • Mail - note: mail to blacksburgskywarn.org addresses is not fully configured yet.
  • Calendar - see the shared calendar for Blacksburg SKYWARN
  • Docs
  • Sites

Your Account

You will need a Google account in the blacksburgskywarn.org domain to update or view restricted materials on this site. Most users will be setup as callsign@blacksburgskywarn.org. This will not affect any personal Google accounts you may now have. If you do not have a personal Google account, your blacksburgskywarn.org account can be used to access applications not included in Google Apps.

At this time, login to this account with other credentials is not available. Hopefully, we will be able to allow login with your regular Google account or some other credential in the future.


The primary function of your blacksburgskywarn.org email address is to make sure SKYWARN-related mail makes it to some place you will see it. If you already have an e-mail client you are happy with, you can just set your mail preferences to forward your mail there. See Settings/Forwarding and POP/IMAP. A full Gmail account is provided, so you can read and send mail via the web interface or use your favorite client via POP or IMAP if you want to manage this as a seperate account.

Note: Until a DNS update is made, your @blacksburgskywarn.org email address will not work properly. This should be done in the near future. For testing, you can use @blacksburgskywarn.org.test-google-a.com for testing.


Google Talk uses the standard chat protocol XMPP. It is supported on almost every platform that has a chat client. Pidgin is a very popular client for MS Windows. You can find many other clients listed at Wikipedia's IM Client Comparison.

When you go to the mail page, there will automatically be a chat window on that page. If you do not wish to use this, you can disable it on the bottom of the pate.

XMPP allows extensions and there are already standards for reporting alert information. See Wikipedia's page on Common Alerting Protocol. If you learn to use one chat protocol, XMPP is by far the best investment of your time.