SSCC News for May 2000

Inside this issue...
Update on ILOVE YOU Virus
Changes in Anonymous FTP
SSCC Account Renewal Now Underway
Address Change for Connecting to UNIX Disk Shares
Office 2000 Installations from DoIT's CDs
SSCC's Dial-In Service to be Eliminated June 30

Update on ILOVEYOU Virus

The Virus commonly known as ILOVEYOU is now appearing under a number of different headers with different attached file names. We can no longer rely on the subject line, message body, or even the attached file name to spot this virus. The message is spread using Outlook address books, so it will come from someone you know, though they will not have sent it intentionally. However, there is still a way to protect your computer.

The attachment is always a Visual basic Script. That means that the file name will always end in ".vbs" or ".vbe" (without the quotes). As of 10:45 this morning, we have a filter in place on SSCC's mail server that stops the delivery of any e-mail message that contains an attachment whose file extension is either .vbs and .vbe. This filter also stops the delivery of other commonly known viruses. When the mail server receives an infected message, it sends a message to Dan Bongert, our UNIX system administrator, and places the file in a special directory for Dan's inspection. If you are the intended recipient of such a message, the message will not be delivered but Dan will notify you with the details.

If you have any e-mail messages with attachments that you received between Wednesday and 10:45 this morning (when Dan activated the filter), do not read any attachments ending in ".vbs" or ."vbe". If your mail program does not display the file extensions for attachments, don't open the attachment from your mail program. Instead, contact the person who sent you the mail message and verify that it's a legitimate attachment.

Just receiving the mail and the attached file does no harm. If you remove the file without executing it (i.e. double-clicking on it), you will not infect your computer or spread the virus.

Changes in Anonymous FTP

In March, the SSCC anonymous FTP site ( was used as a repository for pirated software. Because of this misuse of computing resources by people outside the Co-op, SSCC staff have had to restrict access to our anonymous ftp site.

Anonymous users are only able to "put" files to the /incoming directory, and "get" is totally disabled from that directory. Instead, if someone "put"s a file in the /incoming directory for you, log into one of SSCC's UNIX computers and copy the file manually:

        cd /usr/sysfolk/ftp/incoming 
cp file_put_for_you ~

If you want to place a file onto the anonymous FTP site for others to "get", do this:

        cd /usr/sysfolk/ftp/pub
        mkdir username
        cp ~/file_to_get /usr/sysfolk/ftp/pub/username        

The /incoming directory will be cleaned out every few days. Complete documentation on FTP is available from Consultant or on-line.

SSCC Account Renewal Now Underway

SSCC's annual account renewal is now underway. Everyone should have received an e-mail from John Logan, Director of the SSCC Steering Committee, about this renewal. Account renewal is mandatory and any account not renewed by June 30, 2000 will be frozen.

Please note that you will need to complete the renewal form for EACH user name that you have on the SSCC system. Click here to renew your account.

Address Change for Connecting to UNIX Disk Shares

This is your final reminder that the address has changed for connecting to UNIX disk shares and that the old address (\\norman\sharename) will no longer work after May 31.

The new address is \\sscunix\sharename. For example, for user mcdermot to connect to her UNIX home directory, she would enter \\sscunix\mcdermot in the dialog box that appears when you choose Map Network Drive from the Tools menu of Explorer.

You should also disconnect any mapped drives to the old address. Go to Explorer and choose Disconnect Network Drive from the Tools menu. Highlight the network drive containing \\norman in the path name and then click OK.

For detailed instructions on connecting to disk shares from Windows 95/98, refer to SSCC Pub. #5-8. NT users should refer to SSCC Pub. #5-11.

Office 2000 Installations from DoIT's CDs

Have you recently installed Office 2000 on your PC using a CD distributed by DoIT? If so, have you found that when you try to do some common tasks (like converting a document to a new format) that the program asks for the CD because the feature wasn't installed originally? Maybe you don't even have the CD because you borrowed it from someone. We have written instructions for a custom install of Office 2000 that installs the components most SSCC users need and reduces your chances of needing to install components in the future. Just ask Consultant for the instructions when you borrow the CD.

SSCC's Dial-In Service to be Eliminated June 30

SSCC's RAS dial-in service (accessed through 262-2144) will be eliminated on June 30, 2000. DoIT's huge 56k modem pool is far superior to our 33.6 modems and you can achieve the same connection to the PRIMO domain that you do by using SSCC's RAS dial-in service. We are taking this measure to save the cost of our phone lines and because we cannot afford to upgrade these lines and modems to the speed that users now expect. A 56k upgrade requires not only new modems but an expensive transition to digital phone service.

We have now documented an even better method of gaining access to PRIMO using a network protocol called "Virtual Private Networking" (PPTP) that does not require that you log in to DoIT's modem pool; it requires only that you get access to the Internet in some way. For example, you could use the basic WiscWorld dial-up to DoIT, or you could dial up a commercial Internet Service Provider, which may have local access numbers all over the world, or you could connect to the Internet via an Ethernet connection at a distant university.

Instructions for connecting to SSCC's PRIMO domain via DoIT's modem pool are in 5-13 (Windows 95/98) and 5-15 (Windows NT). Instructions for connecting via PPTP from anywhere in the world are in 5-14. All three documents are available online.

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© 2000 University of Wisconsin Social Science Computing Cooperative