Accounts Overview

CSE Accounts - what are they?

Also see these topics for more specific information: All CSE accounts are by default shell accounts, with login access to the CSE computer systems and a filespace known as the home directory or homedir as well as an email address. There is no such thing as an 'email-only' account. An account may be limited in various ways so only email works, for example not giving it a homedir or removing login permissions, if this is required or desired. Alternatively, a mail alias can be set up that directs to real accounts. All CSE accounts are based on the same template: a username, a UID, membership of classes and groups, location of homedir and some fields for quota information and comments. Depending on the purpose of the account there will be additional fields such as the UPI (UNSW staff or student number) for people, a GID for group accounts and PATHs for course accounts. With the exception of some system accounts, all CSE accounts have an expiry date set upon creation. Warnings about imminent expiry are sent to the account a month before and then week before expiry so that arrangements can be made for either extending the account or saving its data. The account's homedir will remain available in the backup system for some time after expiry, in case it is needed again. If the account uses a mail forward or alias, it will be allowed to remain for 6 months after expiry.

Can I have a CSE account?

Staff members, visiting academics, students, and academic collaborators are all eligible for accounts. Please review the links above for more information on these account types. If you are eligible then it is likely that an account has already been set up for you. The school is not inclined to provide resources in other cases, such as for friends and acquaintances of CSE staff, and so SS do not provide accounts in these cases. We advise people fitting into this category to seek computing resources elsewhere.

When you don't have a CSE Account.

You may want a CSE account because you want to use CSE computing resources. Here are some alternatives:


If you need to work in a Linux environment and you are not eligible for an account (and therefore cannot log into our Linux machines), we suggest running a virtual machine on your computer. VMware provides good virtualisation options, and you can also download a wide variety of different preinstalled virtual machines on their applicances page.


If you are from within the university, UNSW IT provides email accounts for staff and students. Otherwise, you can sign up for free email with providers such as Gmail, Hotmail, and Yahoo! Mail. If you are losing your CSE email service there is some advice on the account expiry page.

Expiring/expired accounts

If your account is expiring and you feel you still require a CSE account, please review the Account Expiry page for more information.
Last edited by Robert Doran 06/05/2013

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