SITSD: What We Do

The State Information Technology Services Division is part of the Montana Department of Administration . It delivers information services and plans, coordinates, trains, controls and secures information resources throughout State government. Web and application services and resources provided include:

  • Computing and telecommunications hardware and software
  • Operational services
  • Professional hardware and software specialists to support the technical environment
  • Web development services and support; and
  • Professional specialists to develop and coordinate policy, research, and development of information resources

The division manages:

  • The two State of Montana Data Centers located in Helena and Miles City. The core purpose of these data centers is to house computer services for the State.
  • A mainframe platform and associated software for applications requiring these resources
  • A distributed network of mid-tier computing platforms (non-mainframe and non-PCs), and a central mid-tier service
  • The statewide voice and data networks that allow all agencies and other qualifying organizations, including remote offices, to communicate with and use central resources
  • Enterprise computing contracts

SITSD also coordinates with state agencies to establish enterprise-computing policies, and works with them to develop state information technology strategic plans and directions.


View the most recent State of Montana Information Technology Strategic Plan.


The state's information technology (IT) architecture is managed and operated from an enterprise perspective. The management structure involves State Information Technology Services Division (directed by the State CIO), various governing IT boards and councils, and additional state agency IT organizations. Please select from the following to learn more about the technology architecture:

SITSD operates an IBM Business Class mainframe and maintains a similar machine for Disaster Recovery. Each mainframe is connected to a disk array available at each site. Report output can be captured for online viewing or sent to high speed laser printers operated by General Services.
The mid-tier environment consists of Virtual Machines and SANs. The mid-tier computing environment is targeted towards general purpose, multi-user, multi-tasking application services. The standard operating systems are Microsoft Windows and Linux.
The State has established a PC standard based on IBM-compatible equipment and selected software. SITSD provides technical support for hardware and software within this standard. The State currently contracts the purchases of PCs through the National Association of State Procurement Officers (NASPO). The State's standard and supported operating system is Microsoft Windows. Microsoft Windows is also the standard file and print operating system. The State uses an Active Directory forest for enterprise management and security of file and print services. The supported desktop software standard is Microsoft Office. The emphasis in the PC environment is on the use of networked systems.
  • The State provides data networking facilities and services for all agencies and other qualifying organizations
  • SummitNet (State and Universities of Montana Multi-Protocol Network) is the intranet for the State and the Montana University System. SummitNet has a redundant backbone with multiple paths to key Montana cities. SummitNet currently supports all state agencies and qualifying organizations by providing connectivity to approximately 22,000 devices at more than 600 locations.
  • SITSD uses a private address numbering plan for IP addressing requirements with the general government portion of SummitNet. The State utilizes IP address translation and firewall protection. It operates a private multi-protocol layer switching (MPLS) network with quality of service (QoS) to provide a secure, converged network environment supporting data, video conferencing, and voice services.
  • The State operates a physically redundant 10 Gb/score network with 10 Gb/s and 1 Gb/s distribution links. Core network sites include Missoula, Helena, Bozeman, Billings, and Miles City
  • The State operates Internet POP’s in Helena and Billings using diverse carriers
  • The State operates two physically separated datacenters offering connection speeds up to 10 Gb/s
  • Standard remote site WAN access speeds are between 5 Mb/s and 1.5 Mb/s. The few legacy frame-relay and DSL sites typically access the network at WAN speeds between 1.5 Mb/s and 56 Kb/s. Host connectivity is typically 1 Gb/s with power over Ethernet available in select locations. Wireless A/B/G/N connectivity is also available in select locations.
  • The State has implemented 802.1x Authentication across the complete enterprise network and successful authentication is required for network access
The State uses a number of strategies related to different directory computing platforms and  applications. These include ACF2 for the IBM mainframe environment, Microsoft Active Directory for Windows server environments, and Oracle Internet Directory for Oracle applications. Where possible, applications requiring authentication and directory services utilize one of these primary directories.
SITSD maintains a single point of contact, the SITSD Service Desk, which provides Montana public employees and other customers with a positive, courteous, and professional contact to facilitate and resolve incidents and requests. The Service Desk provides the logging, tracking, resolution, and elevation of these cases. The SITSD Service Desk operates from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding State holidays. Outside of these hours, standby support is available for critical problems.
The enterprise e-mail system is Microsoft Exchange using the Microsoft Outlook client on the desktop. The State has established Oracle, PostgreSQL and Microsoft SQL Server as the enterprise database management software standards for web enabled and distributed database management.
DNN is the State of Montana web content management software.  DNN runs in a web browser, so agencies can distribute control of their web pages to the employees who truly own the content, and not just those with the technical ability to work in HTML. DNN (formerly called DotNetNuke) comes from the third party DNNCorp. Among the more than 500,000 government and business organizations that run the ASP.NET-based content management system are NASA, the United Nations, and Bank of America. From its freeware base, DNNCorp offers licenses up to the Enterprise edition (Evoc) license held by the State Information Technology Services Division, which includes elite telephone support, complete source code, and SharePoint document integration. Learn more at
The State has implemented an Enterprise Content service based on Lexmark's Perceptive web based software. Perceptive Software offers full featured electronic content management including imaging, workflow with business process management, content based retrieval, custom applications, and automatic content collection. This service is managed and operated by SITSD.
The State's telecommunications system facilities are provided principally to conduct State and University System business. These systems are also available for use by political subdivisions of the State. Political subdivisions include any county, city, municipal corporation, school district, special improvement district or taxing jurisdiction, or any other political subdivision or public corporation. The State uses a core network, for the transport of voice, video, and data, connecting major campus sites in Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Dillon, Great Falls, Havre, Helena, and Missoula, along with the other PBX and video sites in Boulder, Deer Lodge, and Warm Springs. The Local Exchange Carriers (LECs) provide DID/DOD services directly to all of the network nodes. The LECs also provide DID/DOD services to key systems and IFB service in remote locations.

Six University System units have access to the State network:

  • Montana State University MSU-B) - Billings
  • Montana State University (MSU) - Bozeman
  • Montana Tech of University of Montana (MT-UM) - Butte
  • University of Montana (UM) - Missoula
  • University of Montana-Western (UMW-UM) - Dillon
  • Montana State University (MSU-N) - Havre
Video conferencing on SummitNet, the State's network, allows customers to communicate face-to-face, in real time, with two-way video and audio technology. It is a tool that can increase productivity, reduce travel expense, and connect several participants in geographic locations around the state, nation, and the world. Video conferencing can be used for distance learning, agency meetings, statewide training activities, human resource activities, emergency response assistance, and public hearings. The SummitNet video network uses compressed video transported over IP Local and Wide Area networks, the Internet Cloud and digital telephone lines. Learn more about video conferencing services .
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