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MSc: Frequently Asked Questions

If you have any questions not listed below, please let me (Steve Gregory) know. Also tell me if you know any (better) answers.

"How can I change my UOB password?"
See https://wwws.cse.bris.ac.uk/cgi-bin/uob-passwd.pl.

"How can I login to the Dept. system from outside?"
Use ssh to connect to the Linux server, snowy.cs.bris.ac.uk.

"How can I login to the Dept. system from outside?"
Go to Google. Search for "NX Client for Windows". Download, install, and then run this FREE software. It will ask for a Session name. Enter "Snowy". It will also ask for Host name. Enter "snowy.cs.bris.ac.uk". Click Next. Change the KDE option to GNOME. Click Next, until your username and password is asked for. Enter your username and password and you should then have a desktop window to the linux machine snowy. Next time you use the NX Client, it will remember all these options and just ask for your password.

"How can I access files on the Dept. system?"
Use the SSH File transfer client to connect to snowy.cs.bris.ac.uk.

"How can I access files on the Dept. system?"
Use SFTP to connect to snowy.cs.bris.ac.uk and login with your Linux username and password.

"How can I read Uni email from outside?"
Try setting your incoming mail server to spo.bris.ac.uk (IMAP). Alternatively, you can use the web mail service: http://webmail.bris.ac.uk

"How can I print on the printer in room 2.11?"
Try lp -dcs210 or lp -dcs211.

"How can I get access to the building out of hours?"
You probably can't, unless you have some special need. Ask in the School office (2.19).

"Who is my year tutor?"
Your course director fills the role of "year tutor" for MSc students.

"Who is my personal tutor?"
Your course director acts as your personal tutor.

"When will the exam timetable come out and when roughly the exams will be held?"
See http://www.cs.bris.ac.uk/Teaching/Exams

"My name is wrong in SAFE."
Contact the School office (2.19).

"How can I get a transcript, official status letter, etc.?"
Contact the School office (2.19).

"Why can't I login?"
This may be because you have exceeded your disk quota. Try deleting some files. You should still be able to login to do this, using ssh.

"My disk quota is exhausted. What can I do?"
You can confirm this using the command quota -v. First, check whether you have any rubbish that can be deleted (e.g., large trash cans and browser caches). You can find out the disk usage using the du command; don't forget to check the directory above your unix or linux directory. If you still have insufficient space, contact Sid Rahman.

"How do I inform the university of a change of address?"
https://www.bris.ac.uk/studentinfo/. If you don't do this your MSc certificate will be sent to the wrong address.

Any other questions on how to use the Dept. Linux system
This is a bit out of date but might be useful.

"What kind of project can I do?"
Please see the project web pages for information. The projects do not begin until the end of January, but it's a good idea to start thinking of ideas earlier if you can.

"How can I apply for a PhD?"
The best approach is to first decide in which area of computer science you wish to do a PhD. Then, find the appropriate members of the academic staff who are doing research in those areas, and approach them to discuss your interest and that you would like to do a PhD under their supervision. Also discuss the issue of funding with them. They may or may not have project funds to support your PhD. If all is agreed, then fill in an application form. You can obtain these from Ruth in the Graduate School office (2.19).

Be sure to look at the departmental www pages on doing research at http://www.cs.bris.ac.uk/Research/index.html. Beware, that if you visit staff too early in the year, they are less likely to know about you and your potential. The later in the year the better, as you can then show off your academic record here in the department. On the other hand, sometimes you should act earlier, even if it is to register your interest and if you need time to apply for funding yourself. This is not an easy point to advise you on.

Most home student PhDs are funded in the department through various projects. For overseas students one source of funding is the ORS scheme which is extremely competitive. For advice on this, see the PhD Admissions Tutor. Finally, more PhD application information can be found here. See also this.