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Computer Science

College of Engineering and Applied Science

Computer Administration Policies and Practices

Introduction



This document outlines the policies and procedures for installing, upgrading, and maintaining all computers in the Computer Science department. It outlines the policies of the computer system administrators and explains important user information. It also lists the rights and responsibilities of the computer system administrators and computer users.

NOTE: If a user is granted system privileges on a machine, they are also bound by the System Administrator's rules listed here and in other CS polices.

Ethics and Behavior



The System Administrators (SAs) will be held to the standards for acceptable use outlined in the user policy. SAs must ensure that the computer systems work and that students and faculty are able to do their research and course work. Therefore, SAs are granted full privileges to the computer systems. At all times, System Administrators will maintain the ethical behavior described in this document. The users and SAs are expected to treat each other with respect and understanding.

Rights and Responsibilities



System Administrators

  • When the System Administrator has reasonable cause for suspicion, s/he has the right to monitor any and all aspects of a user's activity to determine if the user is violating policies. This can include, but is not limited to: login sessions, files, and e-mail.
  • The System Administrator will respect the rights to privacy of the users and will not engage in actions that will violate this without cause. Furthermore, the administrator will get consent to enter a user's account, in non-security and non-emergency cases, or request department head authorization to do so as necessary.
  • The System Administrator has the right to remove or compress files that are not related to the CS department and are consuming large amounts of disk space, with or without prior notification.
  • The System Administrator has the responsibility to provide advanced notice of system shutdown for maintenance or upgrades, so that users may plan around the times of system unavailability. However, in the event of an emergency, the SA has the right to shut down a system with little or no advanced warning.
  • The System Administrator is responsible for all equipment purchased by the Computer Science department, including those purchased with faculty grants.
  • The System Administrator does not work on computers at faculty or students homes. If it is Computer Science equipment, it must be returned to the department to be worked on.
  • The System Administrator has the right to enter an office to get physical access to a computer.
  • The System Administrator is not liable for the actions of the users.

Computer Users

The user is bound by the user polices of the University of Wyoming, the College of Engineering, and the Computer Science Computer Usage Policies.

  • Each user is responsible for any and all activity from his/her account in or on department facilities.
  • Each user is responsible for fair use of resources such as drive space, CPU time, printing, and other shared resources.
  • Any user who needs to use a large number of resources should contact the System Administrator before hand.
  • It is the responsibility of the user to report problems (and requests) with Computer Science equipment via the problem report form.
  • It is the right and responsibility of the user to ask questions if they do not understand this or other policies.

Backups and Recovery



Backups

All file servers have RAID. Backups to removable drives are completed every Friday night and a monthly backup is completed at the end of the month. Monthly backups are held for a period 6 months.

If you want to backup something, you can use a remove hard drive (that you provide) for the backups. You will need to make a request to the System Administrators. You can also use the CD burners located in the labs.

Recovery

Please NOTE: Backups are done on Friday nights. So if you create a file on Monday, then delete it on Thursday, it will not have been backed up. It is recommended that you backup your own files (via CD, memory stick, etc.) and do not rely exclusively on system backups.

Please send an email to System Admins with a request, including the files to be recovered and where they were located.

A file recovery is normally completed 2 business days after receiving the request.

Emergencies and Disasters



An emergency is defined as a circumstance that adversely affects the user's ability to work. This may include a computer failure, server failure, or department network failure. An example of a non-emergency: printer jam (any time of the day or night). The administrators will do their best to fix the problem as soon as possible. Remember that the SA's are very busy and may not be able to fix your problem immediately. The SAs maintain the right to hang up on you in the middle of the night if you call with a non-emergency.

Failures on Non-Computer Science machines should be reported to the I.T. help desk (766-HELP).

Security

The CS department administrators do their best to protect the computers and network. To do so, computer will be patched and updated. Insecure network applications, that can't be secured, will be removed if possible.

Students and faculty are not allowed to bring in person desktops (A desktop computer is any computer that is plugged into the network and left on.) These computers represent a big security risk.

  • Exceptions can be made to this rule (with Department head and/or advisor's written authorization), but only if the System administrators have full control over the computer and it follows University, Engineering and CS policies for security and use.
  • If a machine is found not following security polices, it will be turned off and removed. Exception: Laptops using wireless access. Since they do not stay within the CS department network, nor are they "on" 24 hours a day.

Electronic Mail



Only CS graduate students and faculty can receive e-mail on CS department mail server. Undergraduate student e-mail will be redirected to the main campus mail servers.

E-mail in considered to be private communication. As such, it will not be tapered with, nor viewed, unless the user is having technical problems with their e-mail or misusing their e-mail.

Federal and state laws currently do not consider e-mail to be a private form of communication, like telephone conversations. Users should be aware of this fact.

E-mail Viruses

The CS department scans for e-mail viruses at the department mail gateway (both inbound and outbound e-mail). Any viruses found are deleted without any notification to the sender or receiver (most of the FROM: lines are forged anyway). The University mail gateway also scans e-mail for viruses.

NOTE: This does not mean you can not get a virus from e-mail and you should still have an Anti-virus scanner on your computer.

SPAM

The CS department does block spam from known spammer sites, in an attempt to keep users' e-mail boxes from "over flowing" with it.

It is highly recommended that you never buy anything from SPAM, as it is normally a scam/fraud and it may encourage them to SPAM more.

A student caught sending SPAM will have their account terminated and can be refered to police for misuse of University properity and other legal action.


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