UDC Network Upgrades

The network in the University Data Center (UDC) will soon be upgraded to ensure continued stability and performance. The current data center network was purchased in 2010 and is near its end of vendor support. 

The new network has already been installed in parallel to the existing network and is undergoing testing. Migration of approximately 750 customer devices will take place starting in late October.  Migrations will be done  one rack pair at a time, in order to lower the risk for individual customers as the migrations take place.  The old

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How to Keep Linux from Hanging Up on You

When you run a command, in either the foreground or the background, on a Linux or Unix system and then either log out or get disconnected, the command you were running is normally killed.  However, there are ways to prevent this "hangup" situation from occurring.


The first and oldest method is to use the "nohup" (no hang up) command.   The "nohup" command instructs your process to ignore the SIGHUP signal that would normally shut it down at logout or when your session disconnects. This allows you to leave

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CNS Instrumentation Networks

To do their research, many researchers have instruments like microscopes, oscilloscopes, MRI machines, Mass Spectrometer machines, weather stations, etc.  Since these devices capture data, the researchers who use them need ways to move that data off the devices and onto other machines where the data can be collected and analyzed.  The network is usually the easiest and most convenient way to ship the data.  But putting the data-generating instruments on the network, exposed to the whole world, is dangerous.  

Such devices on public IP addresses are are hard

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CNS Printer Project

On 25 October 2016, the UT Information Security Office released lists of 115 printers in CNS that are on public-facing IP addresses, making them accessible from the internet. Many of these printers were installed with all their services enabled and without their default admin passwords being changed.

Printers on public IP addresses pose security risks and are being exploited by bad-faith actors. Printers on campus have been used by bad-faith actors to print out offensive propaganda. Bad-faith actors have also sent commands to exposed printers to print out gibberish until all paper

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Printer & Instrumentation VLANs Available

Do you have a network printer that doesn't need access to the (off campus) Internet,  some networked instrumentation,  a desktop being used as an instrument controller, or a desktop whose operating system is no longer supported or cannot be upgraded?

The College of Natural Sciences Office of Information Technology and ITS Networking have created private, campus-only networks for printers and network instruments that do not need internet access or that are vulnerable to exploitation over the Internet.

Devices on these private networks can still be reached from on-

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Purchasing Additional Bandwidth

We depend more and more on WiFi to connect our computers and other devices to the Internet. As a result, the amount of traffic on UT’s wireless network has steadily increased. To handle the traffic, UT networking allocates a weekly default bandwidth to faculty, staff, and students. While the defaut allocations for faculty and staff are generous, for students the default allocation is just 1 GB/week. This may not be enough to meet needs.

It is possible to increase one’s bandwidth allocation each semester.
If you live in the dorms, you can upgrade your subscription

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Updates to Central ITS Services

Over the last several months, the university-level Information Technology Services (ITS) group and the Information Security Office (ISO)  have made some important upgrades to several of their service offerings.  We wanted to review some of these changes here to make sure you know about these changes.

  • Wireless network bandwidth increases:  The wireless bandwidth quotas for faculty and staff have been raised to 2 Terabytes per week (previously 500 GB/week)
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Port 111 rpcbind Vulnerability

On November 2, 2015, the Information Security Office (ISO) asked the IT community to configure systems so that their portmappers (also known as rpcbind) weren't exposed to the public Internet, or required authentication to access. Here is the ISO's description of the portmapper, its concerns with portmapper; and its plan of action dealing with systems with portmappers exposed to the public Internet:

"Portmapper is an RPC service, which always listens on tcp and udp 111, and is used to map other RPC services (such as nfs, nlockmgr, quotad, mountd, etc.) to their corresponding

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Dangers of Peer-to-Peer Networking

What is Peer-to-Peer Networking?

Peer-to-Peer (P2P) networking refers to networks in which peer machines distribute tasks or workloads among themselves. P2P networks are commonly used on the Internet to directly share files or content between two or more machines. Content-sharing P2P networks include BitTorrent, Gnutella2, and eDonkey. P2P applications often, but don't always, take the same names as the networks they run on. These include BitTorrent, PopcornTime, and eMule.

Content-sharing P2P networks are used to share music and videos over the

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