Rights and Responsibilities

4.1 Use of Licensed Software

There is a large quantity of copyrighted and licensed software available for use on the College of Engineering network. Typically every application has a different licensing method. Some software may be licensed to a particular machine or person. Other software may have a "floating node" license that limits the number of concurrent users. Some applications may be such gross consumers of network resources that their use is restricted to particular machines or users.

Copyrighted and licensed software and documentation may not be duplicated unless it is explicitly stated that you may do so. When in doubt, DON'T COPY.

4.2 Use of CPU Cycles

The computing power available to users on the network is enormous. There are hundreds of machines with thousands of total MIPs available to each user. However, a large computational task on a machine can make the machine so slow as to be nearly unusable for other users. This problem is compounded on machines with only 8Mb of RAM. In short, even though there are lots of idle CPU cycles available on the network, it may be very disruptive to the other users if you run programs remotely on their machine.

By default new user accounts are setup with the cputime per process limited to 1 hour:

  • limit cputime 1h (found in .cshrc file)

This limit is intended primarily to help avoid runaway programs from running for long periods of time even after the user has logged out.

4.3 Use of Storage Resources

The file servers on the College of Engineering network have a large, but finite, amount of disk space. If a user consumes large amounts of disk space others will be affected. Who the others are depends upon where the user's home directory is: undergraduates will affect other undergraduates, others will affect people in their department.

4.3.1. Determining your disk usage

The disk usage (du) command can be used to determine how much disk space is being used by a file or directory. To determine how much disk space you are using run du on your home directory:

  • du ~

The size returned by du is in kilobytes.

To determine how much disk space is available in your home directory use the disk free (df) command. For example:

  • df ~

You will note that the df command will indicate which file server serves your home directory, how much total disk space is available, how much is used, and how much is available to users. Ten percent of the total disk space is reserved for performance reasons.

4.3.2. Methods for reducing disk usage

The best way of reducing your disk usage is to delete any unused files. Good candidates for deletion are:

  • backup files (i.e. file.bak, file%, file~)
  • core image files (core)
  • files in your ~/.wastebasket directory
  • object files created by compilers (i.e. file.o)

By default new user accounts are set up with the following limits:

  • limit coredumpsize 0
  • limit filesize 4m

The coredumpsize limit of 0 prevents programs from creating core images of themselves when they crash. If you are a programmer who is debugging a program, you may be interested in allowing core files to be created for debugging. If you are not a programmer, then you will not have any need to create core files.

The filesize limit of 4 megabytes has been determined adequate for most but not all users. This limit is intended to help prevent runaway programs from creating very large files.

4.3.3. Disallowed files

The following file types are not permitted to be transported, stored, printed, or otherwise exist on any of the College of Engineering network hosts:

files not used for the purposes of engineering education, research, or extension

  • rhost files as they are inherently insecure
  • scanned, copyrighted material
  • GIF, JPEG or other image files not used for academic purposes
4.3.4. Users protect their data

Users are responsible for assigning the permissions for their files and directories. By default new accounts are created such that all files and directories created by the user will be readable, writeable, and executable only by the user. For informational uses (i.e. finger, and mail forwarding) the user's home directory will be searchable by others but not writable by others. The change mode (chmod) command can be used to change permissions on files and directories.

4.4 Use of Printing Resources

Many printers are available to network users for print services.  The majority of the software packages available for UNIX workstations support PostScript printers. Only those printers operated by Engineering Network Services, designated as general use printers are subject to the usage guidelines herein.

Printer accounting is implemented on all public lab printers. Users will be allocated 100 free pages per quarter starting the first time they print. Additional pages printed will be automatically charged to the users Bursar Bill at $0.07 per page.

College of Engineering network printers shall only be used for printing information which is used for instructional, research, or extension purposes. All other use is prohibited. Abuse of network printer resources is defined as:

  • printing multiple copies of the same document; use copy machines instead
  • loading or printing any media for which the printer is not designed to use; prohibited materials include resume paper, transparencies, envelopes, etc.
  • printing manual pages from online documentation such as the Answer Book; most documentation sets are available in hardcopy in the public access
  • any activity which could harm the printer or print server
  • any activity which would deny the service of the printer to others

Instructors should encourage the use of e-mail for homework assignments. E-mail is very easy to use for such purposes and has the added benefit of providing detailed information as to when the completed assignment was submitted. See the section on use of E-mail for more information.

4.5 Use of Archiving Resources

Several methods exist for making permanent archives of data on the network. A portable hard drive can be used with Windows 7 to make a backup of your data. There are several other tape archive drives including 150Mb quarter inch (QIC-150) and 8mm in 270 Ross Hall.

4.6 Use of Remote Non-Engineering Resources

The College of Engineering network is directly connected to the Auburn University network (AU-net.) There are services provided to the College of Engineering users by other divisions of Auburn University. College of Engineering network users are bound by the policies of the resource provider when using resources outside of the College of Engineering network.

4.7 Use of Electronic Mail

Electronic mail (e-mail) is the primary form of communication between individuals on the network. Users are encouraged to read their e-mail regularly.

Electronic mail lists covering various topics are available for subscription. Each user must request a subscription in order to be added to a mail list. For information on the available mail lists and subscribing, send an e-mail message to the user majordomo containing the word "help" in the message body.

Your inbox is not permanent storage. It is the individual's responsibility to regularly delete unwanted messages and move messages to be saved to long term storage (e.g. home directory, H:). In the event that an individual fails to use an inbox responsibly, the College, without notice, reserves the right to:

  • Archive and delete any inbox that has not been accessed during the past six months.
  • Move the entire contents of an inbox to the owner's home directory and notify the owner by email of their location.
  • Extract and delete large mail messages from mail lists.
  • Extract and delete all messages from large volume mail-lists over 30 days old.
  • Delete messages in an inbox that are more than one quarter/semester old.

Undergraduates: Your inbox is not to be used to store files to avoid their deletion at the end of the term. Messages which appear to befor that purpose will be deleted without notice.

Users dialing in from home may wish to use Pine. Pine is an ASCII multimedia mailtool that has on-line help and is easy to use.

4.8 Usenet News

Usenet news service is provided by the Division of University Computing. Users can read and post news articles in the College of Engineering by using tin or pine for ASCII connections, or, xvnews or xrn (under Open Windows). Usenet news readers should be aware of and obey the usenet "netiquette" rules. The usenet rules and much useful information can be found in the news.announce.newusers newsgroup.

Last Updated: Oct 31, 2012