CERN Accelerating science

This website is no longer maintained. Its content may be obsolete. Please visit for current CERN information.

next up previous
Next: The New Unix-based Up: The Service Mandate Previous: NICE Services

Unix-based Services

The Unix-based infrastructure services can be broken down into two areas, those existing and those emerging. Amongst those existing are:

Unix Workstation and X-Terminal Support

The DCI-UWS section aims to provide to all CERN users of Unix Workstations and X terminals advice on system configurations, purchasing assistance, help for systems installations and updates and problem debugging at the systems level. All these services can be accessed via a single Front Desk or via standard electronic mail addresses. These services are available to all CERN Divisions and to visitors to CERN and are made available without charge, although software packages purchased, usually with significant discounts, from vendors will generally be resold at cost. In the case of NCD X Terminals, a full hardware support service is also offered in conjunction with the ECP team led by Chris Parkman.

Unix Workstations

The currently-approved list of supported workstations includes HP Apollo Domain Series, HP Series 700, DEC ULTRIX DECstations and VAXstations, DEC OSF/1 Alpha, SUN Microsystems (SunOS 4 and Solaris 2), IBM RS/6000, and Silicon Graphics.

The section maintains up-to-date product descriptions and CERN price lists both for vendor options and selected third party equipment such as discs, memory, Exabytes, etc. We offer advice on selecting appropriate configurations, and for visiting groups assistance is available at the Front Desk for submitting Internal Purchase Requisitions to Finance Division.

Assistance is available to install and subsequently update the system software and vendor-supplied layered software on workstations. Users may call upon our services to try to debug system problems. Where the problem is traced to an application, physics or desktop, users will be referred to the appropriate service elsewhere in CERN or to the vendor of the application.

We publish CERN-specific documentation and Computing Newsletter articles and we maintain news groups. All such information is maintained on a WWW homepage under the title ``Unix Workstation Support'' accessible from the CERN Home Page.

X terminals

The officially-recommended X terminal supplier at CERN is NCD and a contract has been signed with Tekelec, Grenoble for their supply. In the case of X terminals from our approved workstations suppliers (HP, DEC, IBM and SUN), we try to offer a best-efforts service to assist users but cannot promise the same level of support as for NCD.

The services offered will be identical to those for Unix workstations as listed above and in addition we offer hardware support in collaboration with ECP/ESS/OS (Chris Parkman's team) for configuration changes and hardware repair.

We maintain and offer central default boot and font servers for NCD X terminals and we offer assistance to users who wish to establish their own local server. (This font server is also available for use by Unix workstations equipped with X11R5.) We maintain a small stock of X terminals from which users may borrow while their own terminal is under repair. In addition, we maintain a small (5 to 10 units only) stock of X terminals for resale to users with urgent requests.

Other services of the CN-DCI-UWS Section

In collaboration with Central Operations we can equip Unix workstations with a comprehensive file backup utility which relieves the local administrator from the daily concern of user file backup.

We offer to Unix Workstation System Administrators some advice on system security, in particular the so-called CRACK password checking service to detect weak passwords is offered on a central server.

We maintain a central print spool service on which all network- attached printers may be declared and thus accessed from any authorised Unix workstation.

We have negotiated a site contract for Framemaker based on floating licences, as well as an upgrade path to the newly-released Framemaker 4 package. We are in the process of establishing a floating licence server for Unix users of Framemaker.

A. Silverman, CN-DCI-UWS

next up previous
Next: The New Unix-based Up: The Service Mandate Previous: NICE Services

Janne Saarela
Tue May 16 14:52:44 METDST 1995