Q&A: Computer Lab Procedures

Who's in charge of the computer labs?
EMS E173 is run by IMT.
EMS E256, E270, E285 and E384 are run by CEAS EMS.
E286 and W203 are run by the EE Department http://www.uwm.edu/CEAS/departmentsME.html
When can I use the labs?
The CEAS computer labs are accessible 24/7 with your student ID. Check with your instructor for departmental lab availability times.
How do I enter the building after posted hours?
You can use your student ID in the card reader located in the main level of the basement parking structure
What should I do when I see someone misbehaving in the computer labs or EMS building in general?
Tell someone! The 24/7 access CEAS students have to the computer laboratories and EMS building is not a right, but is rather a priveledge. With that priveledge comes responsibilities.

  • If you notice someone misbehaving in the laboratories you should contact the CEAS IT staff noting the time and lab workstation.

  • For misconduct within the EMS building, send the information to the building chairperson.

  • For serious matters, please contact the University Police directly. Their phone number is 229-4627.

  • For grave situations use 911.

What expectation of privacy do I have in the CEAS computer labs?
Essentially none. As the CEAS computer labs are open to all CEAS students, faculty and staff 24/7 and there are no walls or dividers around the individual stations in each lab, you should not have any expectation of privacy. Additionally, there are video cameras installed in the EMS E384 lab as well as network monitors that will indicate when someone is running software from their network home directory.
Can I use the CEAS computers for work related projects?
Generally no. Because academic institutions, like CEAS, receive software at steeply discounted prices, one of the most common licensing provisions is that the software only be used for instructional purposes. The one exception to this rule can be when you are using a project from your employer for a class project. Before starting this sort of project, you should check with both your course instructor and the CEAS IT staff.
Why can't I install software on the lab PC's, I'll take responsibility?
It's not a question of responsibility, it's a matter of liability. If any illegal software was found on a lab PC or file server, the college could face some very severe penalties and fines
How are disk quotas on the CEAS network determined?
Disk quotas are determined by the number of CEAS offered lecture/laboratory sections you are enrolled in for the current semester. For each lecture/laboratory section you sign up for you will receive 40 megabytes of disk space on the CEAS file server.
Please note: Disk quotas will be adjusted up during the initial 2 week add period of each semester. Disk quotas will also be adjust ed downward only after the 8 week drop period has passed.
Why do I get a new course account every semester?
Because we assign disk quota based on the number of courses you are taking. It is very likely, if the accounts were preserved semester to semester and just the disk quota adjusted, students would end up with all their disk allocation used up from the start of the semester resulting in the system being useless for them until they removed enough files to get under quota. At the end of each semester you should backup any files you want to keep.

To facilitate backing up your files, the E260 lab has 2 computers each with 100 Mbyte Zip drives and CD-RW's, the E285 lab has 25 PC's with CD-RW's, and the E384 lab has 32 PC's with CD-RW's and 1 with a 100 Mbyte Zip drive.
Why do CS students get an account for each class, it's hard to remember all those logins and passwords?
That was a decision made by the CS department faculty to give course instructors and TA's greater flexibility in course management and to easily facilitate the electronic submission of homework assignments.
Why can't I eat in the computer labs?
There are two issues here, both related to how frequently the lab systems are used. The first issue is maintaining the lab hardware. Each system in the CEAS labs is used o n the average about 7 times per day during the Fall and Spring semesters. No matter how carefull students are accidents are bound to happen and spilled coffee or soda will really mess up a keyboard and/or mouse. The second issue is hygeine. While we try to clean the keyboards, monitors and mice on a regular basis, it's actually sort of gross to sit down to use a computer and stick your fingers in a glob of ketchup or mayonnaise.
When the lab temperature is high, we will allow students to bring water into the labs, as long as it's in a sealable container.
Why can't I log into a computer and leave it unattended while I go to class?
Your protection. The college does not have the resources to watch over unattended computers. It is possible, and has happened in the past, that other students have deleted all the files from the I: drive of an unattended computer or used an unattended computer to send malicious e-mail or use the account to run unauthorized software. In cases of mailicious behavior, the student leaving the computer unattended will be held at least partially responsible for any misconduct.
I'm working on a project with other students, can we share account logins and passwords?
No. For group projects, we will provide a shared folder for your group. Follow this link to get to the form to request a group folder.
Where can I find the lab policies and rules?
The CEAS computer lab policies are posted on the web.
What happens if I break the CEAS lab rules?
That depends on the severity of the violation, in general:

  • For a first offense of general CEAS lab rules/policies, your account will be impounded until you explain in writing your actions.

  • Subsequent violations of lab rules/policies will be referred to the Associate Dean's office for possible misconduct proceedings.

  • Actions the break the law (i.e. pirating software, music, movies or hacking) will be referred directly to the University Police.

I feel I have been treated unfairly by CEAS IT staff, what can I do?
If you have an issue with a CEAS IT staff member, you should first report it to the Manager of Information Technology in E384D. If that does not prove satisfactory, you should then take discuss the issue with Associate Dean Perez in room 516.