SSCC News for December 2000

Inside this issue...
Status and Plans for UNIX
Status of Problems caused by Command Antivirus Upgrade
Load Balancing Returns to Wincenter Servers
Stata Technical Bulletin Now Available on SSCC's Web Site
New SSCC Publications
Cory Chrisinger Joins SSCC Staff

Status and Plans for UNIX

SSCC is in the process of replacing and supplementing some of its older UNIX machines. Last month in SSCC News we announced that MARIAH, CDE's UNIX machine, had been replaced. Now Sociology has replaced its UNIX machine, ELAINE, with an AlphaServer DS10 (the same model as NORMAN and MARIAH). The new ELAINE is a 466 mhz Alpha processor with 640 Mb of ram. It's running version 5.0 of Tru64 Unix, which is a new version. If you have any problems with ELAINE, please contact Consultant.

Many of you who rely on SSCC's major compute server, GUY, for your large stat jobs have noticed that GUY is busier than ever causing jobs to take longer to run than they used to. Because of this, SSCC has ordered a new UNIX compute server to supplement GUY. We expect this server to arrive early next year. This new computer is a 500 mhz Alpha dual processor with two GB of ram. Meanwhile, please show mercy on your fellow researchers by only running one job at a time and by running large jobs during off-peak hours (using the "at" command) and at lower priorities (using the "nice" command). "at" and "nice" are both documented in How-to #3.

Below is a comparison of various SSCC UNIX machines:

                        CPU Speed
Server     CPU Speed    to 300Mhz   # CPUs   RAM        /tmp Space
-----      ---------    ---------   ------   ---        ----------
MARIAH     466 Mhz      2.5         1        640 Mb     8 Gb
NORMAN     466 Mhz      2.5         1        640 Mb     4 Gb
ELAINE     466 Mhz      2.5         1        640 Mb     4 Gb
GUY        300 Mhz      1           3        1280 Mb    8 gb
WINGRA     133 Mhz      0.2         1        160 Mb     6 Gb
On-Order   500 Mhz      3.0         2        2560 Mb    TBA
Notes on relative speed column:

Status of Problems caused by Command Antivirus Upgrade

On November 15th, SSCC rolled out version 4.59.4 of Command Antivirus (CAV) to desktop PCs. This new version addressed a serious issue witnessed by many of our Windows NT Workstation clients where system crashes would occur during the automatic update process. For this reason and to prepare for the abundant release of new viruses often seen during the holiday season, rolling out CAV 4.59.4 was necessary.

The latest version of CAV has created new incompatibilities with software installed on client machines. It should be noted that this is only applicable to Windows NT Workstation clients. This does not affect Windows 9x machines. Eudora 4.x or higher and the SMS client have both shown problems with CAV in the following way:

The extent of these "slowdowns" depends on the speed of your system. SSCC has contacted CAV regarding these new issues and expressed our concerns. We are testing a beta release of version 4.60 that includes an entirely new antivirus scan engine. Testing of other commercial Antivirus solutions has also started due to the long-standing problems we continue to have with CAV. Information about our findings will be reported. Until then we ask for your patience until a permanent solution can be implemented.

Load Balancing Returns to Wincenter Servers

During next Wednesday's (December 13, 2000) downtime, load balancing services will be implemented on Wincenter. This feature will redirect your Wincenter logon to the least busy server ensuring the most productive working environment. For example, typing wincenter1 at a terminal prompt may result in a logon to the Wincenter2 server if it is handling a lesser workload than Wincenter1.

Roaming profiles and identically configured servers will make certain your Wincenter session will look and operate the same regardless of what Wincenter server you log into.

Stata Technical Bulletin Now Available on SSCC's Web Site

SSCC's subscription to the Stata Technical Bulletin (STB) now includes an electronic copy in addition to the printed journal. The electronic copy is a pdf file and is stored on SSCC's web pages. The STB is a valuable resource for articles and new Stata commands. It has become the vehicle by which new features are first added to Stata and distributed.

New SSCC Publications

Following are new SSCC publications available from the Public Terminal Rooms, Consulting, or on-line at SSCC's web site:

Creating and Publishing a Web Page (available early next week)
How to Publish a Web Page Using Windows
How to Publish a Web Page on the SSCC Web Server using UNIX
Web Publishing Policy

The first document is a tutorial which takes you through the steps of creating a web page using FrontPage. The second and third documents provide instructions on how to publish the web page(s) you create.

Cory Chrisinger Joins SSCC Staff

Cory Chrisinger has joined the SSCC staff as our Network Administrator. In addition to network administration duties, Cory will also be assisting with UNIX and NT administration.

Cory received his Bachelors of Science in Telecommunications Management from DeVry Institute of Technology in October. While in school for the past four years, Cory worked part time as a Help Desk Technician for a private company.

Cory's office is Soc. Sci. 4321 and he consults Wednesday afternoons 3-4:30. Please drop by and welcome him.

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© 2000 University of Wisconsin Social Science Computing Cooperative