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Ryerson Computer Science
Home > Current Students > Services > Facilities User Guide
Welcome to the Ryerson Department of Computer Science

The Department of Computer Science is located on the second floor of the Center for Computing and Engineering at Ryerson University. We have five labs; ENG206 is an open lab that students always have access to because no courses are booked there. For more information regarding the DCS computer labs, refer to sub-section
Lab Information under section "Introduction to DCS Computing Facilities". This guide is designed to introduce you to the diverse academic computing resources available to you as a student of the Department of Computer Science (DCS). It is designed to answer frequently asked questions such as:
  1. what type of resources are provided by the DCS?
  2. where are the DCS computer labs?
  3. how do I use the e-mail system at Ryerson?
  4. how do I print?
  5. how can I connect to Ryerson's modem pool?
  6. how can I transfer files to/from home if I use an Internet Service Provider?
  7. how do I surf the Web?
ACS (Academic Computing Services) and DCS (Department of Computer Science)

Computing and Communications Services (CCS) is Ryerson's central information technology department, providing computing resources for Ryerson as a whole. Academic Computing Services (ACS) is a division of CCS. All Ryerson students are given an ACS e-mail account in the form of login-id@ryerson.ca. UNIX accounts on servers such as turing, malthus and so on, are assigned as required. While CCS operates over 300 networked microcomputers and workstations in its labs, DCS operates its own labs independently. The Department of Computer Science can be found on the second floor of the Centre for Computer and Engineering at Ryerson University. For more information about DCS Computing facilities, see the Introduction to DCS Computing Facilities.
Where to Get Help

If you have a question which is not answered by this User's Guide, you should consult the User's Guide to Academic Computing and the Internet which is full of useful information about most of the computing facilities available throughout all of Ryerson. If you would like to book a lab or want to get some additional information about our Facilities, please email request@scs.ryerson.ca . If there is a problem with the hardware in one of our labs, first make sure that everything is plugged in properly. If this doesn't solve the problem then please email request@scs.ryerson.ca and include a detailed description of the problem, including which room and machine (eg. "The mouse is broken on PC ENG206-42" or "The monitor won't turn on at ENG201-15"). If there is a problem with the software or network, ask around to see if anyone else can help you. If that doesn't work, please contact one of the System Administrators. Mail can be sent to request@scs.ryerson.ca to report hardware or software problems, or to request new services.
Introduction to DCS Computing Facilities
About DCS Servers

The Department of Computer Science uses a variety of hardware platforms and operating systems (O/S). The purpose of the following sections is to explain what kind of hardware can be found in the various DCS labs and what O/Ss are being run on each machine. On the UNIX and Linux side of things, DCS has multiple servers which run Unix/Linux. They are: metis, elara, europa, thebe; with four CPUs and 4GB of memory, which runs Linux. Our print server is called prm and our file server is phobos. The PCs boot up on their own and can load either Windows or Linux at boot-time. Windows is only available on the PCs and is started from the PC's hard disk as opposed to a remote server. While one can login into the UNIX/Linux machines both locally and through the Internet using an ssh client, the Windows machines can only be accessed locally. Worthy of mention is the fact that the file server provides all users with a centralized "home" directory that can be accessed from any of the DCS UNIX/Linux servers and Windows . It is important to remember, though, that a program compiled on one particular O/S and hardware platform cannot be run on another. For example, if you compile and run a C program on Windows on a PC, you could not then run the same executable on a Linux sytem. You would first have to re-compile the program on the Linux sytem and then you could run it. The same principle applies to both the UNIX and Linux systems.
Lab Information

DCS labs are located on the second floor of the The Centre for Computing and Engineering , in which there are 6 labs available to all students: ENG201, ENG202, ENG203, ENG205, ENG206 and ENG211.
ENG201 - 42 Dell OptiPlex 9010 All-in-one PC's
Hardware: 42 Intel Core i7, 8GB RAM, Built-in monitors
O/S: Windows, Linux
ENG202 - 42 Dell OptiPlex 9010 All-in-one PC's
Hardware: 42 Intel Core i7, 8GB RAM, Built-in monitors
O/S: Windows, Linux
ENG203 - 42 Dell OptiPlex 9010 All-in-one PC's
Hardware: 42 Intel Core i7, 8GB RAM, Built-in monitors
O/S: Windows, Linux
ENG205 - 42 Dell OptiPlex 9010 All-in-one PC's
Hardware: 42 Intel Core i7, 8GB RAM, Built-in monitors
O/S: Windows, Linux
ENG206 - 10 Dell VDI
Hardware: N/A
O/S: Windows, Linux
Lab Schedules

Please be aware that all labs except ENG206, which is our open lab, have classes booked in them at different hours of the day. The following schedules are for the current term only and may be out of date. For the most recent schedule, check the lab door.
  1. ENG201 - 42 Dell PCs
  2. ENG202 - 42 Dell PCs
  3. ENG203 - 42 Dell PCs
  4. ENG205 - 42 Dell PCs
  5. ENG206

Information about UNIX is available from the following:
  1. UNIX help for users
    A beginner-level introduction to the UNIX operating system Go here first!
    If you want to know how to do something in unix, take a look here first!

Information about Linux is available from the following:
  1. Linux Online - http://www.linux.org
    The ultimate authority on Linux
  2. The Red Hat Linux Distribution - http://www.redhat.com
  3. The Debian Linux Distribution - http://www.debian.org
  4. The Caldera Linux Distribution - http://www.caldera.com
  5. The FreeBSD Linux Distribution - http://www.freebsd.org/
  6. The Slackware Linux Distribution - http://www.slackware.com/
How to Access the DCS Facilities

Logging into Windows

The Windows machines can only be accessed locally in labs. Before you log in to Windows make sure the PC you are using is currently running Windows. If not, re-boot the machine and when prompted select Windows from the OS list. At this point, you will be presented with a login prompt. Simply enter your login id and your password and you will be taken to the Windows desktop at which point you can access the available application programs.
Logging out Windows

There are two ways to log off:
  1. Hit Ctrl-Alt-Delete and click the 'Log off' button.
  2. Go to the Start Menu, choose 'Shut Down' and then click the 'Close all programs and log on as a different user?' radio button.
NOTE: It is *very* important that you always log off your account when you are finished to ensure that nobody else can access your account. The actions on the account is the responsibility of the account holder.
Logging into Your UNIX/Linux Account

Unlike Windows, you can access your UNIX/Linux account from the PCs. The methods used to log in from each type of machine are described in the following sub-sections.
From a PC:
Using Windows

If you are at a PC and are logged into Windows you do not have to log out to access your UNIX/Linux account. There are, in fact, two ways to access your UNIX/Linux account.
  1. Load up one of the ssh client programs available on Windows , such as 'SSH Secure Shell Client'. Press Space Bar/enter the hostname (machine) you want to login to then enter your login id and password.

  2. Double-click the 'X-Win32' icon on the desktop which will start up an X-Windows client, then right click on the icon which is shown on the menu bar. Choose session and then go to 'moon' (if you do not see 'moon' in th esession, right-click on the icon and select 'X-config', then select Add. Select the XDMCP connect method then session name type 'moon', the Host Name is 'moon.scs.ryerson.ca'. Your newly created session should be available by following the previous directions. From this point onwards, the login process is exactly the same as for Linux/UNIX.

Using Linux

If you are at a PC and you actually want to boot up Linux and NOT Windows , then you can reboot the machine and, by default, it will boot up Linux. At this point, you are presented with the familiar login chooser.
Logging out of your UNIX/Linux Account

To log out of your UNIX/Linux account, first close all applications you may be using and then type 'exit' from your main x-term. This will end your session, and, if you have exited properly, the login chooser should return to the screen so that the next person can log in. Of course, if you were using an SSH client, such as 'SSH Secure Shell Client', you should simply type 'exit' and close the application, at which point you should find yourself at the Windows desktop. NOTE: It is *very* important that you always log off your UNIX/Linux account when you are done. Otherwise, a malicious/mischievous person can wreak havoc with your account, even deleting all your files if he/she so wishes.
Essential UNIX/Linux Account Management

UNIX/Linux Online Help (man)

UNIX/Linux has an extensive on-line manual with detailed documentation for every standard UNIX command. To get information about a specific command, such as 'ls', simply type 'man ls' and you will get a detailed explanation of the command and all the flags/options associated with it.
Changing Your Password (passwd)

To change your password, you should first login to the machine named moon.scs.ryerson.ca, using ssh. Once you have managed to login to one of the moons, you should then type 'passwd', at which point you will be prompted to enter your old password, which is your current password that you will be changing. If you have entered your old password correctly, you will be prompted to enter a new password. Finally, you will be asked to confirm your new password, at which point you should simply re-type your newly choosen password. If you have entered all the requested information correctly, your new password will be propagated to every DCS server within 5 minutes. NOTE: Make sure you choose a good password; a mixure of letters (upper and lower case), numbers and special characters is recommended. Do not use your name, a friend or family member's name, your birthdate, or any other information that can be easily guessed by someone else. Also, your password should be eight characters long. And, of course, never tell anyone your password or you risk having your account compromised. IMPORTANT: Your password WILL expire after 6 months from the day it was changed. Make sure you change your password before it expires to avoid access problems to your account.
Files and Directories

NOTE: For more details on any of the following commands, simply type man followed by the command at the command prompt.

Listing Files and Directories (ls)

PURPOSE: ls - list contents of directory
SYNOPSIS: ls [ -aAbcCdfFgilLmnopqrRstux1 ] [ file... ]
DESCRIPTION: For each file that is a directory, ls lists the contents of the directory; for each file that is an ordinary file, ls repeats its name and any other information requested. The output is sorted alphabetically by default. When no argument is given, the current directory is listed. When several arguments are given, the arguments are first sorted appropriately, but file arguments appear before directories and their contents.

Changing to a Directory (cd)

PURPOSE: cd - change working directory
SYNOPSIS: cd [ directory ]
DESCRIPTION: The cd utility will change the working directory of the current shell execution environment. When invoked with no operands, and the HOME environment variable is set to a non-empty value, the directory named in the HOME environment variable will become the new working directory.

Changing Permissions on Files and Directories (chmod)

PURPOSE: chmod - change the permissions mode of a file
SYNOPSIS: chmod [ -fR ] < absolute-mode > file...
chmod [ -fR ] < symbolic-mode-list > file...
DESCRIPTION: chmod changes or assigns the mode of a file. The mode of a file specifies its permissions and other attributes. The mode may be absolute or symbolic.

Creating a Directory (mkdir)

PURPOSE: mkdir - make directories
SYNOPSIS: mkdir [ -m mode ] [ -p ] dir...
DESCRIPTION: The mkdir command creates the named directories in mode 777 (possibly altered by the file mode creation mask). Creation of a directory requires write permission in the parent directory.

Copying Files and Directories (cp)

PURPOSE: cp - copy files and directories
SYNOPSIS: cp [-fip] source_file target_file
cp [-fip] source_file... target
cp -r|-R [-fip] source_dir... target DESCRIPTION: In the first synopsis form, neither source_file nor target_file are directory files, nor can they have the same name. The cp utility will copy the contents of source_file to the destination path named by target_file. If target_file exists, cp will overwrite its contents, but the mode (and ACL if applicable), owner, and group associated with it are not changed. In the second synopsis form, one or more source_files are copied to the directory specified by target. For each source_file specified, a new file with the same mode (and ACL if applicable), is created in target; the owner and group are those of the user making the copy. It is an error if any source_file is a file of type directory, if target either does not exist or is not a directory. In the third synopsis form, one or more directories specified by source_dir are copied to the directory specified by target. Either -r or - R must be specified. For each source_dir, cp will copy all files and subdirectories.

Deleting Files (rm)

PURPOSE: rm - remove file entries
SYNOPSIS: rm [-f] [-i] file...
DESCRIPTION: The rm command removes the directory entry specified by each file argument.

Removing Directories (rm -r or rmdir)

PURPOSE: rmdir - remove directory entries
SYNOPSIS: rmdir [-ps] dirname...
rm -rR [-f] [-i] dirname...[file...] DESCRIPTION: The rmdir / rm -r commands remove the directory entry specified by each file argument.

Renaming/Moving Files and Directories (mv)

PURPOSE: mv - move files
SYNOPSIS: mv [-fi] source target_file
mv [-fi] source... target_dir DESCRIPTION: In the first synopsis form, the mv utility moves the file named by the source operand to the destination specified by the target_file. source and target_file may not have the same name. If target_file does not exist, mv creates a file named target_file. If target_file exists, its contents are overwritten. This first synopsis form is assumed when the final operand does not name an existing directory. In the second synopsis form, mv moves each file named by a source operand to a destination file in the existing directory named by the target_dir operand. The destination path for each source is the concatenation of the target directory, a single slash character (/), and the last path name component of the source. This second form is assumed when the final operand names an existing directory.

Checking Your Disk Space Limit (quota -v)

PURPOSE: quota - display a user's ufs file system disk quota and usage
SYNOPSIS: quota [ -v ] [ username ] DESCRIPTION: quota displays users' ufs disk usage and limits. Only the super-user may use the optional username argument to view the limits of other users.
Printing from UNIX/Windows

The following commands only apply to printing on the HP LaserJet 9050 printer located in room ENG202 and HP LaserJet 9000 located in ENG206. Every Applied Computer Science student is given a quota of 5000 pages to be used throughout his/her entire school career. If more paper is required, you must go to the DCS office, at which point you will have to pay a small fee per sheet of paper. Please note that you can print from your UNIX/Linux account or from Windows.
Printing from UNIX/Linux

Printing a document (lpr)

PURPOSE: lpr - submit print requests SYNOPSIS: lpr
[ -P destination ] [ -# number ] [ -C class ] [ -J job ] [ -T title ] [ -i [ number ] ]
[ -1|-2|-3|-4 font ] [ -w number ] [ -m ] [ -h ] [ -s ] [ -filter_option ] [ file ... ] DESCRIPTION: The lpr utility submits print requests to a destination. lpr prints files (file) and associated information, collectively called a print request. If file is not specified, lpr assumes the standard input. ENG202 printer
  1. Printing Double-Sided: lpr -Peng202 [ file ... ]
  2. Printing Single-Sided: lpr -Peng202-single [ file ... ]
  3. Printing Double-Sided: lpr -Peng206 [ file ... ]
  4. Printing Single-Sided: lpr -Peng206-single [ file ... ]
NOTE: It is recommended to convert documents to postscript format for compatibility.

Checking the Print Queue (lpq)

PURPOSE: lpq - display the content of a print queue
SYNOPSIS: lpq [ -P destination ] [ -l ] [ + [ interval ] ] [ request-ID ] [ user ]
DESCRIPTION: The lpq utility displays the information about the contents of a print queue. A print queue is comprised of print requests that are waiting in the process of being printed.

Canceling Your Print Job (lprm)

PURPOSE: lprm - remove print requests from the print queue
SYNOPSIS: lprm [ -P destination ] [ - ] [ request-ID ... ] [ user ... ]
DESCRIPTION: The lprm utility removes print requests (request-ID) from the print queue. Without arguments, lprm deletes the current print request. lprm reports the name of the file associated with print requests that it removes. lprm is silent if there are no applicable print requests to remove. Users can only remove print requests associated with their user name.
Printing from Windows
Printing a document

If the document is open, click the File menu, and then click Print, and you will be presented with a selection of printers. Simply select a printer ENG202, ENG206, ENG202-single or ENG206-single. Then press OK and your document should print.

If the document is not open, drag the document from My Computer or Windows Explorer to your printer in the Printers folder. NOTE: Default printer is set to print on both sides of a page. Should you wish to print on a single side, simply choose ENG202-single from Name: selection in the print window.

Checking the Print Queue

When you print a document, a printer icon appears on the taskbar. Double-click it to see a list of documents waiting to print.

Canceling Your Print Job

Click on Printers from My Computer to open the Printers folder. Double-click the printer you are using. Select the document you want to cancel. On the Document menu,click Cancel.

NOTE: Unless you have Full Control access permissions, you can cancel only your own documents.
What is the Internet?

The Internet, sometimes called simply "the Net," is a worldwide system of computer networks - a network of networks in which users at any one computer can, if they have permission, get information from any other computer (and sometimes talk directly to users at other computers). It was conceived by the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) of the U.S. government in 1969 and was first known as the ARPANet. The original aim was to create a network that would allow users of a research computer at one university to be able to "talk to" research computers at other universities. A side benefit of ARPANet's design was that, because messages could be routed or rerouted in more than one direction, the network could continue to function even if parts of it were inaccessible in the event of a military attack or other disaster. Today, the Internet is a public, cooperative, and self-sustaining facility accessible to hundreds of millions of people worldwide. Physically, the Internet uses a portion of the total resources of currently existing public telecommunication networks. Technically, what distinguishes the Internet is its use of a set of protocols called TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol). Two recent adaptations of Internet technology, the intranet and the extranet, also make use of the TCP/IP protocol. See http://www.whatis.com for more information.
Other Useful links

  1. CS Handout - handout.pdf
  2. Internet 101 -http://www.internet101.org
  3. Internet FAQ -http://www.faqs.org/faqs/
Using E-mail
What is E-mail?

E-mail is shorthand for Electronic Mail. As the name implies, it is a way of sending mail electronically to another user over the Internet. An e-mail can be simply a text message, or an html document with images or some other multimedia enhancements. The user can also include attachments to the e-mail, such as files or programs.
Ryerson ACS E-mail Facility

As a Ryerson day school student, you will automatically have an ACS e-mail account at a server called ryerson.ca. For instructions on using ACS e-mail, please refer to Ryerson's User's Guide to Academic Computing and the Internet .
Ryerson DCS E-mail Facility

DCS provides an additional e-mail account for each DCS student. You can access your DCS email using any one of the DCS UNIX/Linux servers. Your DCS e-mail address will be of the form: login-id@scs.ryerson.ca, where login-id is your DCS login id.
Forwarding Your E-mail to Other Accounts

If you want to forward your CS e-mail to other e-mail accounts, such as to your ISP or web-based e-mail account, you need to make a .forward file in your home directory with 600 permission and home directory should have 711 permission for this to work. In this file, put the e-mail accounts you want to forward to, one per line. If you want to also include a copy at your CS account, put login-id@scs.ryerson.ca as the last line in your .forward, where login-id is your CS login. To avoid having to check both ryerson.ca account and CS e-mail you should forward e-mail from the ryerson.ca server to CS.
Vacation - reply to mail automatically

vacation automatically replies to incoming mail. To setup vacation simply run vacation start from the command line on a UNIX system. The program creates a .vacation.msg file, which contains the message that is automatically sent to all senders when vacation is activated. Make sure to modify this message to reflect your needs. A .forward file will be created if one does not exist (TIP: move existing .forward (if file exist) somewhere else before running vacation start then append older .forward file to existing one) and that should be all you need to do. Finally run vacation stop when a reply is not needed any more.

Mutt is an alternative UNIX e-mail client which has less features and is less menu oriented than Pine.
Running Mutt for the First Time

To use Mutt, log into any DCS UNIX or Linux server, type mutt and press Enter. If this is your first time running Mutt, Mutt will ask you if you want it to create its folder. Press Y to go to the index menu.
Reading an E-mail

From the index menu, you will see a list of incoming e-mails. Use the arrow keys to go to the e-mail you want to read and press Enter. Press spacebar to scroll down the message. Press the minus (-) button to scroll up. To go to the previous messages the up arrow or left arrow key and press the down arrow or right arrow key to go to the next message. If the message contains an attachment, pressing the v key will show you a list of all the attachments. To save an attachments, highlight the one you wish to save and press s and enter a name to save it as.
Sending an E-mail

To send an e-mail, press m and type in the email address. You also have to enter a subject for your e-mail message. Mutt will then launch a helper program to edit your message. The helper program is determined by the environment variable EDITOR, by default the variable is set to emacs. When the editor has started, type your message. When done, just exit the editor and choose save when prompted to. Once you have completed preparing your email press y.
Replying to an E-mail

Press r to reply to an e-mail. When asked, press y if you would like to include the original message in your reply.
Saving an E-mail

Press s and enter the filename where you want to save the e-mail.
Deleting an E-mail

To delete an e-mail, press d. If you accidentally marked an e-mail to be deleted, press u to unmark it.
Exiting Mutt

After you finish using Mutt, press q to quit.
Some Useful Links

Mutt - Referencs Guide - http://nics.ucolick.org/Answers/Mail/Client/Mutt
Other E-mail Clients

You can also use graphical e-mail clients such as Netscape Messenger or Microsoft Outlook Express on DCS machines or at home if you have an Internet Service Provider (ISP). Graphical e-mail clients are easier to use and they are capable of handling graphics in e-mail messages. Here are some of the setup parameters required to access your DCS e-mail account: Outgoing/SMTP Server: smtp.scs.ryerson.ca Incoming/IMAP SSL Server: imap.scs.ryerson.ca (SSL Port 993 - use your username and password for authentication). NOTE: Sending email using smtp.scs.ryerson.ca is restricted to Ryerson IP addresses.

SSHftp is a free Windows FTP client. It is available on DCS Windows NT machines. To run SSHftp, logon to one of the DCS Windows machines, click on its icon on the desktop or choose it on the start menu. If you want to connect to your DCS UNIX account, make sure the hostname field is moon.scs.ryerson.ca. Type in your username and password here. Your username and password will not be saved when you close your FTP connection. Press Enter or click on OK to connect. Once connected, you can navigate the directories on the local machine and the server just as in Windows Explorer, such as double clicking on a folder to open it. However, if you double click on a file, it will be transferred from one machine to another. You can also highlight (select) multiple files and then press the corresponding arrow sign "->" or "<-" to start the transfer. When you finish using SSHftp, click on the exit button to exit.

Telnet is a way of logging into a server from a remote machine, such as logging into one of the moons from home. However, the conventional telnet connection is unencrypted and hackers can "capture" your username and password while you are logging into the remote server. Ryerson DCS Servers use a secure, encrypted telnet connection called Secure Shell (SSH). To use SSH to access any of the servers from DCS Windows machines or from your home PC running Windows, you need an SSH client. You can obtain SSH for free from http://www.openssh.com . If you have a Mac, you can get NiftyTelnet at http://andrew2.andrew.cmu.edu/dist/niftytelnet.html. For Linux users, you can obtain SSH from the Official SSH download site at http://www.ssh.com/download. You can SSH to moon using the command line, simply by typing "ssh moon.scs.ryerson.ca".
Secure Shell Client

SSH is installed on all DCS UNIX Servers and Windows NT machines. To use it, logon to DCS Windows NT, double-click on the SSH Secure Shell Client icon on the desktop or Click on the Start menu and choose SSH Secure Shell Client. When the SSH window appears, press Space Bar enter then server you want to connect to, such as jupiter.scs.ryerson.ca. If you use SSH at home, type in the hostname, such as jupiter.scs.ryerson.ca. After you connect to server, you can store session by pressing ALT+F then Save As Jupiter or any name you want. To use the stored session, press ALT+F then choose a session from list. If this is the first time you are connecting to DCS UNIX servers, you will be prompted to store the host key in the Windows registry and you should click on Yes. After you enter your username and password, you can start using your UNIX account.

WWW is an acronym for World Wide Web. The WWW is a collection of documents - containing text, pictures, sound, etc. - which are stored on various servers around the world. These documents also contain hyperlinks, known simply as links, to other web pages on the Internet. These links often appear as underlined or highlighted text, which when clicked on with a mouse, take you to that particular web page. In order to view these web pages, it necessary to have a piece of software known as a web browser, which properly displays these pages. Examples of web browsers are Netscape Communicator, Microsoft Internet Explorer and Sun Microsystem's HotJava. The WWW was created by a physicist named Tim Berners-Lee in 1989, in order to facilitate the sharing of information between scientists and researchers. Berners-Lee was a member of the organization CERN (European Nuclear Research Center) in Switzerland. What makes the WWW ideal for sharing information and exchanging ideas is the the ability of a web document to directly link to any other document on the entire Internet. Anyone with a computer, Internet access and a web browser can access any document that has been posted on the Internet. The WWW uses the HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTP) to transfer web pages from remote servers to your local machine, so it can then be displayed by your web browser. A typical web page address would be http://www.ryerson.ca, where http:// tells the browser you are requesting a web document and www.scs.ryerson.ca is the web server's Internet address. It is also called a Uniform Resource Locator (URL). An URL can represent a web page or a resource such as a ftp site, an e-mail address or a file. Each web page is stored in a format known as Hyper Text Makeup Language (HTML). HTML is the language used to write virtually all web pages. When you access a particular web page on the WWW, your web browser interprets the HTML code and then displays the document that corresponds to that code. If you want to browse the web, you can use Netscape Communicator or Microsoft Internet Explorer on Windows NT machines as well as on the UNIX servers. You can also use Sun HotJava on Jupiter.
Microsoft Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer is available on all DCS Windows machines. To run it on the machines, double-click on the Internet Explorer icon or choose it from the Start menu.
Ryerson Web Resources

To learn more about the resources available to you as a student of the Department of Computer Science, you should visit the Department of Computer Science Web Page. To learn more about the resources available to you as a student of Ryerson Polytechnic University, you should visit the Ryerson University Web Page.
What is a Web Search Engine?

As you may be aware, there are millions of web sites all over the world, and millions upon millions of actual documents. How in the world can you find the web address or URL that you want? Well, the fastest and best way is to use a search engine. A web search engine is a web site that contains a huge database of URLs and their corresponding contents, which you can search through by specifying one or more keywords. To use a search engine, you must first know the URL of the search engine you want to use (see the list of search engines below). Once you have found a search engine that is to your liking, you simply enter the appropriate keyword(s) into the textfield provided and hit or press the button provided. You will then be presented with a list of all web sites that match your search criteria. If your search criteria was too general, you may end up with thousands of matching web sites, so try and be as specific as possible. At this point, you may examine the links returned as a result of your search. Hopefully you will find what you were looking for!
Some Web Search Engines

Google http://www.google.ca
Alta Vista Canada http://www.altavista.ca/
Excite http://www.excite.com/
HotBot http://www.hotbot.com/
Lycos http://www.lycos.com
Metacrawler http://www.metacrawler.com
WebCrawler http://www.webcrawler.com
Yahoo http://www.yahoo.com
Yahoo Canada http://www.yahoo.ca
How to Set Up Your Own Home Page

You can have your own web site on both Ryerson ACS and DCS servers. However, you have much more disk space on DCS servers to store web pages than on ACS servers since each DCS student has a disk quota of 40MB. Your DCS web address will look like http://www.scs.ryerson.ca/~login-id where login-id is your username.
  1. Create a directory called 'public_html' under your home directory. Type 'mkdir public_html' from your home directory.
  2. Set directory permissions so that people will be able to access your web page. Type 'chmod 711 .' from your home directory to set the permissions for your home directory. Type 'chmod 711 public_html' from your home directory to set the permissions for your public_html directory.
  3. Create a file called 'index.html' in your public_html directory. This will be the default page that comes up when people access your web page. Be sure to set the permissions for all your html files (and any other files, such as image files) to 644, in other words, 'chmod 644 filename'.
Using CGIs

You can use CGI scripts at any place within your web site. The scripts can be programmed using C, Perl, UNIX shell script. For them to work, you must place your CGIs in a directory called 'cgi-bin', located in your public_html directory.
  1. Create a directory called 'cgi-bin' under your public_html directory. Type 'mkdir cgi-bin' from your public_html directory.
  2. Set the permissions for the cgi-bin directry so that they can be accessed and executed by others. Type 'chmod 2711 cgi-bin'
Note: Your CGIs will need to have permission 755 for them to work properly. To be able to run your scripts, you will need to give the absolute path to your script, i.e. http://www2.scs.ryerson.ca/~login-id /cgi-bin/cgi-script
Some Useful links

  1. What is the WWW? - W3C
  2. World Wide Web FAQ - http://www.boutell.com/faq/oldfaq/
Word Processing and Programming Editors

Emacs is an advanced programming editor for most platforms, including UNIX/Linux and Windows. XEmacs is the X Windows version of Emacs. In Linux/UNIX, when you enter emacs &, you are actually starting XEmacs since DCS Servers are configured to use XEmacs. To open a file in XEmacs, press the open icon and the open dialog box will appear. Use the middle button to open files or folders. If you only have a two-button mouse, try clicking on both mouse buttons. You can also open a file by pressing Ctrl-x, Ctrl-f (press Ctrl-x and then Ctrl-f). You will be prompted for the filename. You can use tab or space to auto-complete the path. If you want to cancel any command, just press Ctrl-g. To save a file, press Ctrl-x, Ctrl-s. When you want to quit XEmacs, press Ctrl-x, Ctrl-c. All these command bindings are also shown in XEmacs menus. However, if you want to use XEmacs in a console environment (Not X Windows), such as when using putty, you need to remember at least some of the basic commands. The following are some of the common commands for XEmacs. The "cr" stands for carriage return or enter.
Ctrl-x, 2 Splitinto two windows horizontaly
Ctrl-x, o Switch between windows
Ctrl-x, 1 Use one window
Ctrl-s Search for text
Ctrl-s, Ctrl-s Search again
Ctrl-r Search backwards
Alt-% Replace text
Ctrl-v Page down
Alt-v Page up
Alt-x, man<cr>pgm Check manual page of program pgm
Alt-x, gdb<cr>pgm Debug a program. The program must be compiled with gcc -g
Alt-x, info<cr> Display the Info manual pages
Tab Indent line
Alt-<, Alt-@, Alt->
Alt-x, indent-region
Indent all codes

Vi was the first visual editor to be shipped with UNIX and comes with all versions of UNIX/Linux. To launch vi, logon to your UNIX account and enter vi. Vi has two modes: command mode and editing mode. In the command mode, you can type in all your commands but you can't edit the text. In editing mode, you can only modify the text. When vi is started, it is in command mode. To insert text, press i, to go back to command mode, press ESC. Please note that arrows keys only work in command mode. Here are some common vi commands:
x Delete a character
dd Delete a line
:w filename Save the buffer to filename
:w Save if filename is given
:q Quit
:q! Quit and discard changes
a append text after cursor position
For a complete command listings, refer to its manual by entering man vi at the shell prompt.

Pico is yet another text editor for Linux/UNIX. To use Pico, logon to your Linux/UNIX account and enter pico. To edit an existing file, enter pico filename. There are a list of commands at the bottom of the screen. The "^ " sign means that you have to press and hold the Ctrl key and then press the letter beside it to invoke the command. For example, to insert a file, press Ctrl-r (press and hold the Ctrl key and then press r), type in the file name you want to open or press Ctrl-t to browse your directory. On some terminals, the save command Ctrl-o may not work. However, when you press Ctrl-x to exit, Pico will prompt you to save your file, and you can press y to save the file. Do not press Ctrl-s. It will suspend what you are doing and nothing on the keyboard will work. In case you press it, you can press Ctrl-q to break out of it.
Star Office

StarOffice is an alternative in office productivity suites. The office suite has a simple, easy-to-use interface and contains full-featured applications including word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, graphics and database capabilities. StarOffice is installed on the PCs and available in all of the DCS labs.
Microsoft Word

Microsoft Word is a word processor for essays or other documents. It is not a programming editor.
X Windows

X Windows is a network-based windowing system, which although more frequently associated with UNIX, has also been implemented for various other operating systems, such as Windows, VMS, DOS and Macintosh. As a result, X Windows provides an extremely flexible foundation on which to run any form of Graphical User Interface (GUI). An example of the functionality it provides is the ability to run programs from a remote server, such as running Netscape from Jupiter on your PC, just as if you are running Netscape locally.
Window Managers

A window manager is a special program that basically manages the windows that appear on your screen. Unlike Microsoft Windows, which has an integrated window manager, X Windows requires a window manager to be installed on top of it. However, since there are so many different window managers, you have an extensive choice when it comes to style and functionality.
Some of the Window Managers Available on DCS

Although you can only use one window manager at a time. Just enter the name of the window manager and the "&" sign to run it and return to your shell prompt. fvwm - a relatively basic window manager. By default, it will have two buttons on the top-right of each window. The left one minimizes the window and the right one maximizes the window. The top-left button gives you a menu of window operations. Double-clicking that button will close the window. You can drag the border of a window to resize it, or drag the titlebar to move it. If you click on the desktop (also known as root window), each mouse button will give you a different menu. The left button gives the application menu, the middle button shows window operations and the right button displays a list of open windows. You can also customize fvwm to suit your style. Just edit the configuration file .fvwmrc in your home directory. If you don't have it, copy it from /sw1/fvwm-1.24r/lib/X11/fvwm/system.fvwmrc to your home directory and rename it to .fvwmrc fvwm2 - another version of fvwm with more features, although it takes up more memory. It uses .fvwm2rc as its configuration file. afterstep - a window manager similar to NEXTStep. It uses .steprc as it resource file.

X-Win32 is a Windows program that allows the user to run X Windows within it. For instructions on using X-Win32, refer to the previous section on logging into your UNIX account.
Setting up X-Win32 from Home through ssh tunneling

X-Win32 is available for evalution use for 2 hours each connection session. You can also purchase a student edition for around $45 US. For more information, go to X-Win32's homepage at http://www.starnet.com. To use X-Win32 to connect to Jupiter from home, launch X-Win32, right-click it on the taskbar and choose X-Config->Security
Add local host ( to X-Host list, then press OK. Start ssh client and go to Edit->Settings
check Tunnel X11 connections then press OK. Now ssh to moon and start an xterm or a window manager, then switch to x-win32 to see the results.

Cygwin/XFree86 is a port of XFree86 to the Microsoft Windows operating Systems. Cygwin/XFree86 can be used instead of x-win32 and it's for FREE.
To use Cygwin/XFree86 to connect to DCS *NIX servers from home:
  1. Download and install cygwin (www.cygwin.com).
  2. Run startxwin.bat, this will start X windows.
  3. Open an xterm then ssh -X X.scs.ryerson.ca -l username
Accessing Ryerson's ACS Facilities from Home

A better way to get online from home is to get your own ISP (Internet Service Provider), at which point you can simply telnet/ssh to the Ryerson server of your choice.
FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

What is the difference between ACS and DCS?

ACS is an acronym for Ryerson's Academic Computing Services, the division which provides all Ryerson students with computing services. Each student is given an e-mail account at user @ryerson.ca, where user is your login ID and a UNIX account at hopper.acs.ryerson.ca. For more information on Ryerson ACS, please refer to Ryerson's User's Guide to Academic Computing and the Internet .
DCS is an acronym for Ryerson's Department of Computer Science. Only Ryerson computer science students, faculty and staff and some Continuing Education students and faculty have the privilege of using DCS facilities.

What is considered as improper use of DCS facilities?

To ensure all Ryerson students have a healthy envirornment to work in, there are a few rules you have to follow. You are not allowed to view pornography or any other sort of offensive material in the DCS labs. Be forewarned, offensive screens dealing with any sort of discrimination, racial, sexual, etc., are against the Ontario Human Rights Code! In addition, you cannot use your e-mail account at DCS to "spam" - a massive, unwanted sending of e-mail to many different recipients, analogous to junk mail. Also, you cannot use Ryerson's computer facilities for commercial pursuits or to gain unauthorized access to Ryerson servers or other servers on the Internet, better known as "hacking". Doing any of the above may result in the suspension of your computer privileges and/or your being charged with student conduct code or criminal code offenses.

Can I play games in the computer labs?

NO. The computer facilities at Ryerson are for educational use ONLY, you are NOT allowed to play games. Offenders will have their computing privileges revoked.

Can I drink or have my lunch while using the computer in the lab?

Absolutely not. Eating and drinking while using the computer is not allowed. Offenders will have their computing privileges revoked.

What are Windows , UNIX and X-Windows?

Windows is a version of Microsoft Windows for networks. It has the Windows look-and-feel and provides extra security for multi-user environments. UNIX is a multi-user operating system which supports large-scale network systems. Therefore, many universities such as Ryerson use UNIX to manage student accounts. X-Windows is a network-based windowing system, which although more frequently associated with UNIX, has also been implemented for various other operating systems, such as Windows, VMS, DOS and Macintosh OS. It allows you to run graphical programs, such as Netscape Communicator.

How do I change resolution under Linux when using DCS Intel machines?

Press Ctrl-Alt-Keypad + (hold down the Ctrl and Alt keys, then press the + sign on the keypad located at right-hand side of the keyboard) to lower the resolution. Press Ctrl-Alt-Keypad - to raise the resolution.

How do I reboot the PCs from Linux?

Press Ctrl-Alt-Backspace and then Ctrl-Alt-Delete.

What is my initial Linux/UNIX/Windows password?

Your initial password is MMDDXXXX - MM is your birth month, DD is your birth day and XXXX is last for digits of your student number.

My Windows password is expired but system will not allow me to change it!

It is a bug in Windows Login (winlogin.exe) that was supposed to be fixed with Windows . You must type [loginname]@SCS.RYERSON.CA in the "User Name:" field; then the system will prompt for password reset and it will accept the change.

How do I change my password for my Windows account?

Once you have logged in, hit Ctrl-Alt-Delete and press the "Change Password" button. Password can be changed remotely. Make sure you ssh into any of the UNIX/linux servers then type kinit to get your credentials then type kpasswd at the command prompt and press enter key. kpasswd will ask for your current password then prompt you to enter a new password.

How do I change my EXPIRED Windows (Kerberos) password?

Make sure you are logged into any of the UNIX/linux servers then type kinit at the command prompt and press Enter. You need to enter your current Windows password then you get to pick a new password. After changing your password you will have to wait up to 5 minutes before you can login using the new password.

Where do I change my Linux/UNIX/Windows password?

Passwords can be reset either in person with a proper photo ID, or you can ask your instructor to send us an email on your behalf. Passwords can be reset in either rooms ENG249 ENG246 ENG248 between 9am-12p and 2pm-5pm Monday-Friday.

How do I change permissions on my files in my Linux/UNIX account?

Linux/UNIX files and folders have permissions for three kinds of users: one for the owner (user), one for the group and the last for everyone else (Others). There are also three kinds of permission: read, write and execute.
For example:fungame rwxr-xr--, means the user has full control, the group can read and execute the file (assuming it is a program or shell script) and anyone else can only read the file. To set the permission according to the above, enter the following command: chmod u=rwx,g=rx,o=r fungame. You can also use + to add and - signs to remove permissions, such as: chmod g-r,o-r fungame. You can even use digits to represent the permissions, where read = 4, write = 2 and execute = 1. So to set the above original permission, enter the following command: chmod 754 fungame . In other words, rwx = 4 + 2 + 1 = 7, r-x = 4 +1 = 5 and r-- = 4. The same rules apply to directories, except that x denotes the ability to access (cd into) a directory, not the ability to execute the directory, which doesn't make any sense. NOTE: Others DO NOT need write permission on any of your files/directories. By leaving the write permission on, you are giving permission to just about anybody to change the content of your files. Make sure the write bit is taken off on all of your files and directories for others.

What are some common Linux/UNIX commands?

cd dirname (change directory), ls dirname (list files and directories), mkdir dirname (make directory), rmdir dirname (remove directory), rm filename (remove a file), cp file filecopy (copy files), mv file/dir file2/dir2 (move/rename files/directories), quota -v (check your disk limit) and man command (manual of a command) Most UNIX commands can take multiple arguments, such as 'rm file1 file2 file3'. You can also use the wildcard '*' to include multiple files, such as 'rm file*'.

How do I read my DCS e-mail under Linux/UNIX?

Use mutt to read your e-mail. See the chapter entitled Using E-mail for more details.

How do I edit a file under Linux/UNIX?

Use pico, vi or emacs. See the chapter entitled Word Processing and Programming Editors for more details.

What is a shell?

A shell in Linux/UNIX is a command language that executes commands read from a terminal or a file. In other words, it is basically a command prompt, waiting for input from the user. Every UNIX shell has a fairly substantial language built into it which can be used to write "shell scripts", which are basically simple, relatively small programs. While there are many different Linux/UNIX shells, such as sh, bash, csh, ksh, etc., the default shell for all DCS accounts is bash.

What if my backspace and/or other editing keys don't function properly under the ksh shell?

Type the following at the command prompt: set -o emacs. It will let you use the backspace key. Pressing Ctrl-p will allow you to retrieve commands entered prior to the current command. Ctrl-n will retrieve commands entered after the current command (if there are any). Use Ctrl-b and Ctrl-f to go left and right at the command line. Also, Ctrl-a and Ctrl-e let you go to the beginning and end of a line respectively.
If "set -o emacs" doesn't work for your shell, enter "stty erase ^H" or "stty erase ^?" will let you use the backspace key. If both failed, press Ctrl-h or the Delete key to delete characters.

How do I kill or suspend a program in Linux/UNIX?

If you didn't run the program with & at the end, you can press Ctrl-c to terminate the program. Pressing Ctrl-z will suspend the program and return you to the shell prompt. Enter " fg" to resume the execution of the program. If you run the program in the background by putting& at the end of the command line, such as "netscape &" under X-Windows, you have to know its process ID (PID) to kill it. Type in "ps -u user " where user is your login name. You will see a column of PIDs. When you find the PID of the program, type in "kill -9 pid " where pid is the PID of the program.

Oops! I accidentally deleted a file/directory, how can I get it back?

The filer takes snapshots of your account at least twice hourly, nightly and weekly. You must be logged into one of the moon servers in order to recover the files or directories. From your home directory, cd into .snapshot directory where you will find the following directories, named after how often snapshots are taken: hourly.0, hourly.1, hourly.2, nightly.0, nightly.1, weekly.0 and weekly.1. Enter the directory that corresponds to the latest version of the file you lost. To recover the files or directories while preserving the permissions, enter "cp -rp filename/dirname ~" where filename is the filename, dirname is the directory name and ~ is another way of specifying your home directory. This assumes that the lost files or directories are located somewhere under your home directory.

How do I transfer files?

On DCS Windows machines, you can copy files to your H: drive, which is the drive where your home directory is mounted. In this manner, you can access all the files in your home directory from both your Windows and UNIX account. Alternatively, you could use SSH to transfer files between a local PC and any server you may have an account on. On Linux/UNIX machines, such as moon, use the secure ftp client, sftp, or ssh. from the command line.

How do I print my files?

You can print from your DCS UNIX/Windows accounts. If you want to print any Windows documents, such as an essay in MS Word format, you have to choose Print from the File menu then OK. If you want to print from your Linux/UNIX account, log into your Linux/UNIX account and print the file by typing "lpr filename" at the command prompt, where filename is the name of the file you want to print. See the section entitled Printing under "Essential Linux/UNIX Account Management" for more details.

How do I check the print queue?

From Linux/UNIX simply type lpq at the command prompt.

How do I cancel my print job?

From your Linux/UNIX account enter "lprm job#", where job# is a unique number identifying your print request which you can find by typing lpq. You must be the owner of that print job in order to remove it.

How do I get more printer pages?

You must go to the DCS office and purchase paper from the secretary, at which point you will have to pay a small fee per sheet of paper.

Why did I loose my Desktop environment?

Your nt-profile is corrupted. Check you quota ( quota -v ) you need at least 6MB of free space for your nt-profile. Once you have enough space; just replace nt-profile with original (See How do I replace my nt-profile?)

How do I replace my nt-profile?

You must log off Windows, log on to a Unix/Linux server, then from your home directory, (type cd to get back to your home directory), type
rm -fr nt-profile/
rm -fr nt-profile.V2/
rm -fr .mozilla/
rm -fr mozilla-win/

How do I backup and get a new user profile in Windows 7?

You must log off Windows, log on to a Unix/Linux server, then from your home directory, (type cd to get back to your home directory), type
mv nt-profile.V2 nt-profile.V2.backup
Logging into a Windows 7 lab machine will generate a new profile.

How do I restore my Linux/UNIX profile?

You need to copy original files (.xsession, .profile) from /class/public/ on to your home directory. Type cd to get back to your home directory, type
cp /class/public/.xsession .
cp /class/public/.profile .
Then make sure that files have execute bit on.

Who should I ask for help when needed?

If you have a question which is not answered by this User's Guide, you should consult the User's Guide to Academic Computing and the Internet which is full of useful information about most of the computing facilities available throughout all of Ryerson. If you could not find the answer to your question or if you find someone who is improperly using the computer facilities, please contact one of the system administrators: (request@scs.ryerson.ca). You can also contact Ryerson Campus Security at (416) 979-5000 ext. 5001 or Harassment Prevention Services at (416) 979-5000 ext. 5349 in an emergency situation.

I am a registered Continuing Education (CE) students, do I get an account on Computer Science (DCS) computing systems?

You will get an account on the DCS computing system, ONLY IF you are taking at least one course that is scheduled to use one of the DCS Labs - ENG201, ENG202, ENG203, ENG205 & ENG211. Your login name and password will be given out by your instructor at the first lab session. Accepting your DCS account means you have agreed to follow DCS lab policies, failing to do so will result suspension of your account privilege.

I am a registered CE student and have an DCS account, but I can't print. It says that I don't have enough printing pages!

You will get 200 pages at the beginning of the term, if your course(s) are scheduled to use DCS labs. This is reset at the beginning of every term. If you have finished your 200 pages, you could buy more from Lori or Lucia at DCS front office located in ENG287. Minimum purchase is $5.00.