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Changes to Interactive and Batch Registration

Tony Cass , IT/PDP , Genny Ferran , IT/ASD and Tony Osborne , IT/CE

Two changes to the registration for Interactive and Batch services have taken place on September 14th, 1999:

  1. a merge of the PLUS service accounts,
  2. a merge of the CORE and CUTE registration families.
The first change affects all users of the PLUS services (RSPLUS, HPPLUS and DXPLUS), but the second change only affects Group Administrators. Further details of both changes are given below.

Merging the PLUS service accounts

At present, accounts are registered separately on all PLUS services. For many users this does not matter as they only use one service, RSPLUS, HPPLUS or DXPLUS. People who need to use two (or more) of these services, however, must have an account registered on each service. Although the account names are identical, an extra administrative step is needed to create the additional accounts.

From September 14th only one account is necessary for the PLUS service and this enables users to access any of the three existing services.

Please note that this is only an administrative change. You can carry on working as now, connecting to RSPLUS, HPPLUS or DXPLUS as necessary. The only difference that you can see is that the output from the "phone" and "xwho" commands has changed. Users with only one account, e.g. RSPLUS, now see this has become a PLUS account - i.e. the output from the phone command has changed from

  P *RSPLUS      NATALIE     TNT$C3    17861   1028 05-MAY-98
  P *PLUS        NATALIE     TNT$C3    17861   1028 05-MAY-98
Users with multiple accounts now see a single PLUS account - i.e. the output from the phone command has changed from
  N +DXPLUS      DOUGAL      TNT$C3    10476   1028 02-JAN-99
  N +HPPLUS      DOUGAL      TNT$C3    10476   1028 16-FEB-99
  N +RSPLUS      DOUGAL      TNT$C3    10476   1028 27-AUG-99
  N +PLUS        DOUGAL      TNT$C3    10476   1028 27-AUG-99
There are two reasons to make this change now: one trivial, the other more significant. Firstly, we believe that the systems we have today can cope with the large number of accounts (about 8,000). At the time the PLUS services were introduced we were worried about potential performance problems and so tried to limit the number of accounts on each service.

The more important reason for the change, however, is that we will be introducing a Linux-based public service before the end of the year. By making this change now we can ensure that users of the existing PLUS services will be able to use the new LXPLUS service without first registering for an account. In this way we will ease migration to this new service, which will be taking over from RSPLUS as the general purpose interactive service.

Merging the CORE and CUTE registration families

This second change affects only Group Administrators. Until now the batch and interactive services have been in two separate families, CORE and CUTE, and administrators have had to select the appropriate family depending on the service for which an account is required - e.g. CUTE for HPPLUS and CORE for SHIFTOPAL. There are now no differences in the registration information required for these two families. Indeed, registration for some CORE services, e.g. SHIFTATLAS and SHIFTCMS, was removed earlier this year and information from the corresponding CUTE service used to create accounts instead.

Since September 14th, therefore, we switched to a single family for all central batch and interactive services - the CORE family. Group administrators who need to create accounts on central services will thus have to select the CORE family in USERREG and then the service required, rather than having to choose between the CORE and CUTE families. We hope that this simplification of registration procedures will be appreciated.