Down Times on November 19 and 25

SSCC has purchased additional disk space which should arrive next month. In preparation for its implementation, we need to upgrade the operating systems on both our Windows and Linux file servers. Below are the dates with affected services:

Windows: Saturday, November 19, 7:00a.m.-4:00p.m. (hopefully shorter). During the downtime there will be no access to any files stored on the Windows network (home directories, project directories (X:), etc.) and no network printing. In addition, all terminal servers (Wincenter1-3 and Winstat1-3) will be down. Any jobs running on the terminal servers when the down time begins will be terminated.

Linux: Friday, November 25, 7:00a.m.-noon (hopefully shorter). During the downtime there will be no access to any files stored on the Linux network (all web pages, /aux, /project, etc.). This means you cannot run any jobs and E-mail will be unavailable. (All incoming e-mail will be queued for delivery at the end of down time.) Any jobs running on HAL, KITE, or Condor when the down time begins will be terminated.

If either of these dates create major problems for you, please contact Nancy McDermott right away.

Cory Chrisinger Leaving SSCC

We're sorry to say that Cory Chrisinger will be leaving SSCC at the end of this week. Cory's probably best known to SSCC members who have needed help with PC network/security problems or remote access/home networks. Actually though, most of Cory's responsibilities have been behind the scenes implementing our new building network, adding a firewall, and then keeping the network running efficiently and securely.


Cory's position is being re-posted and we hope to have someone hired early next year. Meanwhile, be patient because it may take a little longer to provide assistance with remote access/home network issues.

We wish Cory much success at his new position as a Senior Network Administrator for the University of Wisconsin Colleges.

Campus Phase Out of Eudora

UW-Madison's license for the Eudora email client ends November 30, 2005. The UW community can still use Eudora, but licensing and support will end soon. Fortunately, there are two very good alternatives supported by SSCC staff: Thunderbird and Outlook Express. Both programs can easily convert your Eudora settings and address books. Configuration instructions for both Thunderbird and Outlook Express are available on SSCC's web page. If you need help making the switch, please contact the consultant for assistance.

Using Compressed Data in Stata

Henrik Stovring of the University of Southern Denmark has written a very handy pair of Stata commands: gzsave and gzuse. These work exactly like the normal save and use commands, except that the data are automatically compressed. This can save a substantial amount of disk space, and the file may even open more quickly since less data have to be sent over the network. On the other hand, it does require CPU time to compress and decompress the data, so if your .do file saves or loads data frequently you may want to stick with the regular save and use.

At this point the gz compression used by gzsave and gzuse is available on KITE and HAL, so the commands can only be used on those servers. We'll consider installing it on the Winstats depending on demand, so let us know if you're interested. To install gzsave for your account, start Stata and type ssc install gzsave (gzuse will also be installed automatically). If you'd like more details first, type findit gzsave.

SSCC's Fall Training Schedule

SSCC's Fall training schedule is winding down. Check out our two remaining offerings on SSCC's training web pages. This month we have "Visualizing Spatially Referenced Data with ArcGIS" and "A Hands-On Introduction to NVIVO." Remember that all SSCC training sessions (including Soc 365 sessions) require preregistration.

Tip: Managing Email Folders

Dividing your email up into Folders is a great way to make email more manageable for both you and your email program. You may want to assign email to folders by topic, date, sender, or any other organization that makes sense to you. A few suggestions:

  • Make sure no one folder gets too large, especially if you want to read it outside the building. A one hundred megabyte folder will be slow to open over a remote connection. A one thousand megabyte folder probably won't open at all. This includes your inbox!
  • Store all folders on the server, not locally. Local folders will not be available if you're using any other computer, will only be readable using the same email program that created them, and worst of all are not backed up on tape. As a general rule, don't save anything of importance on your local hard drive.
  • Tiresome as it is, there's just no substitute for deleting messages that are no longer needed. Imagine the result if you kept every piece of paper you received.

To view the total size of all your folders, visit our Email Report web page.

To view the size of any given folder in Thunderbird, first go to Tools, Options, Advanced, and under General Settings check Show expanded columns in the folder pane. Then click OK. You'll see Name appear above your list of folders along with a small button. Click on the button, check Size, and the size of each folder will appear next to its name.