Tech Launch Pro
Welcome to Mines! Computing, Communications, and Information Technologies (CCIT), the campus IT department, presents Tech Launch Pro — an overview of technology resources available to faculty and staff at Mines.
Take a look at the information below, then navigate to our Getting Started Guide for even more details. Get a running start on the technology and computing part of your Mines experience.
CCIT welcomes you to Mines!
As a new employee, you are granted access to a variety of Mines computing resources. This web page will tell you about many of those resources, including wireless networks, school email, free software, and even personal access to a supercomputer.
Of course, all these great computing resources are shared, so we want to say up front: With great power comes great responsibility. Take a look at Mines IT policies (www.mines.edu/policy-library/information-technology) and especially policies about the appropriate use of our shared resources.
But first, a few basic tips when getting started at Mines:
1. Passwords – don’t share them!
Password sharing is in violation of Mines policy. Worse, sharing your password can allow people to steal your identity. Who needs that kind of hassle your first semester here (or ever)?
2. Backups – do them! Now! Really!
You are responsible for backing up your own data and files. Your information is retained on Mines systems while you are an employed, but it can be lost or misplaced. Do yourself a favor and keep extra copies of important data for yourself on a USB flash drive or other device. And beware: After you leave Mines, any data, files, or email left behind will certainly be deleted. To get an early start on good backup strategies, see our backup FAQ: faqfinder.mines.edu/faq010.
Again, welcome to Mines. And happy computing!
Computing, Communications, and Information Technologies (CCIT) offers a wide variety of IT services to the Mines community. Here are a few select services that employees may find particularly useful (in alphabetical order): Account Creation and Management When you came to Mines you activated your “MultiPass” — a username and password to access many of your Mines computer services. If you haven’t done so already, to activate your MultiPass, start at www.mines.edu/ccit/account-claim. If you have already activated your account, you can change your password and update account recovery information at identity.mines.edu. Your MultiPass credentials will allow you to log into most campus systems. (Not all campus systems use MultiPass credentials but, where possible, we are working to integrate additional systems.) Canvas The Canvas learning management system (LMS) provides syllabi, readings, quizzes, grades, and more for most of your Mines classes. Log into Canvas with your MultiPass credentials at canvas.mines.edu. Computer Support Visit the Technology Support Center in the CCIT Computer Commons of the Center for Technology and Learning Media (CT156, 1650 Arapahoe St, in the southeast corner of campus) for fast, on-the-spot, in-person help with simple computing issues like software installation, network connectivity, viruses, or account access. Email & Calendaring All Mines employees are issued a free Mines email account, running on Microsoft Exchange and available via your Mines MultiPass credentials. This is where official communications from Mines to you will be sent, so check your Exchange email account regularly. As of Fall 2018, the school is migrating to a new cloud-based version of Exchange, part of Office365 online. Here’s a handy login page to access your email in a browser during our ongoing transition to a new email infrastructure: www.mines.edu/campus-email. Read more about email for faculty and staff — including instructions on configuring common email clients — here: www.mines.edu/ccit/faculty-staff-email-online. Enterprise Systems Services Banner for student, HR, and financial records; Cognos reporting, travel expense management, and more. FAQfinder Frequently asked questions about various technology issues at Mines are answered in our searchable FAQfinder database at faqfinder.mines.edu. High-Performance Computing Mines makes a number of high-performance (“supercomputer”) resources available to members of the Mines community and others. See hpc.mines.edu for more details or continue on to the High-Performance Computing tab on this page. The M The M, is not only the famous Mount Zion landmark but also the official Mines mobile app for iOS and Android. It puts maps, menus, news, events, and much more in the palm of your hand. See more at www.mines.edu/ccit/mines-mobile. Mines Emergency Alert In the event of an emergency on campus, Mines Emergency Alert service will notify you via email, phone, or text. All faculty, staff, and students should sign up now at https://www.mines.edu/emergency/mines-emergency-alert/. Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) Interested in better security for your Mines accounts? Enroll in our multi-factor authentication system, Duo. When you log into a crucial account, you will confirm that login on a second device, typically a phone or special key fob. This makes it nearly impossible for cyberthieves to hijack your account. (As a bonus, Duo users may be required to change their MultiPass password less often than the other Mines employees.) See more at www.mines.edu/ccit/mfa. Print Services Printing is generally available within your department. Our Client Support Services team can help you get things configured on your computer. Please submit a Mines Help Center “Helpdesk” support request at helpdesk.mines.edu to ask for help. Project & Portfolio Management Project and Portfolio Management is the standardizing of the processes, methods, and technologies that are used in managing the projects that support the organization’s operational and financial goals. See more at www.mines.edu/ppm. Research Support Services CCIT’s Research Support Services (RSS) team works to identify research needs across the university and aims to provide over-arching services and infrastructure to further research and meet the vision set by Mines@150. See rss.mines.edu/ for more details. Software Hundreds of specialized software programs are available on more than 60 computer labs spanning 1,500 public computers across campus. Select software — most Microsoft programs, MatLab, Mathematica, ArcGIS, Minitab, LabVIEW and more — may also be available for download and personal use. See details at www.mines.edu/ccit/software. Trailhead Trailhead, the Mines campus portal, is a central location for accessing various Mines online services (eg., printing financial reports). Check it out at trailhead.mines.edu. Wired and Wireless Networking Members of the Mines community have access to wired and wireless networks campus-wide.
- To access a wireless network, pick CSMwireless (not CSMguest — reserved for visitors to the campus) from the available wireless networks and open a web browser. Your web page should be redirected to a registration page where you can sign in (with your MultiPass) to register that device’s wireless card with our network. Wait a few minutes and reboot the machine to access the CSMwireless network wirelessly, and permanently, on that computer.
- Once you are up and running, you may also want to enable the eduroam wireless network on your laptop or mobile device. This allows for wireless network access at other participating schools across the country in addition to Mines and is more secure because it is an encrypted network. This is CCIT’s preferred wireless network for all users. But a few more configuration steps are required to access this network. See details here: www.mines.edu/ccit/networking/eduroam.
- To access the wired network, plug your computer into any of the wired network sockets found in dorm rooms. Open a web browser. Your web page should be redirected to a registration page where you can sign in (with your MultiPass) and register your wired network card. Wait a few minutes and reboot to access the Mines wired network permanently on that computer.
- Some devices may have no web browser. Register them manually (on a separate computer with a browser) here: netreg.mines.edu.
Zoom Video and web conferencing and chat. OTHER RESOURCES
- The full CCIT Service Catalog is available here: www.mines.edu/ccit/service-catalog — it tells you what kinds of things we do.
- Our A-to-Z listing of services provides more information on all CCIT services: www.mines.edu/ccit/services-a-z.
The CCIT Technology Support Center (TSC) is located in the Center for Technology and Learning Media (CTLM) Computer Commons, 1650 Arapahoe Street. Here we provide in-person support to students, faculty, and staff for common computing issues that can be resolved in a reasonable amount of time. Student consultants are the primary provider of support. Complex support issues presented by faculty and staff may be rescheduled for an office visit.
How to request this assistance
Call us (303.384.2345) or visit the Computer Commons (CT 156) during open hours. We will show you how to sign in by opening a Mines Help Center (“Helpdesk”) support request at helpdesk.mines.edu. If you already have a request open with us, we’ll simply look it up. If you need assistance with an issue on personally owned equipment, then we will ask you to sign a damage waiver. Availability of this service depends on the availability of student consultants.
Types of assistance available
We can assist with software installation, virus removal, network connectivity, and password and account issues, among other problems. Our goal in providing support is to empower you to support yourself. For issues such as software installation on a personally owned computer, we will work alongside you to help you help yourself, so you need to be present.
Some questions can be answered over the phone. Or it may be that a computer has completely failed and a user is unable to enter a Mines Help Center request directly. In these cases our tech-support hotline is available. The direct number is 303.384.2345, or simply dial extension 2345 from any campus phone.
Hours of availability
The Technology Support Center is available during regularly scheduled and posted hours. Typical hours are:
Mon-Thu 7 a.m. to 11:45 p.m.
Fri 7 a.m. to 5:45 p.m.
Sat 9 a.m. to 5:45 p.m.
Sun 9 a.m. to 11:45 p.m.
What are CCIT, CTLM, TSC, and the Computer Commons?
Acronyms are us!
∗ CCIT (Computing, Communications, and Information Technologies): The main Mines department providing technology and phone support and services. We are found primarily in the CTLM.
∗ CTLM (Center for Technology and Learning Media): A building located at 1650 Arapahoe St, next to Marquez Hall, in the southeast corner of the Mines campus.
∗ TSC (Technology Support Center): A physical Helpdesk. Find us in the east wing of the CTLM (room CT156), just around the corner from Einstein Bros Bagels. The TSC offers hands-on computer support from student consultant employees. TSC hours are generally Mon-Thu: 7am – 11:45 pm, Fri: 7am – 5:45 pm, Sat: 9 am – 5:45 pm, Sun: 9am – 11:45 pm. Note that the TSC operates on first-come, first-served basis. You should be present while we’re supporting you and your IT-related issue. For account support, please bring your BlasterCard or other government issued form of ID.
Do you like free software?
The following software (and more) is free to current Mines employees:
- SolidWorks (Win)
- Mathematica (Win, Mac, Linux)
- AutoCAD (Win)
- MathCAD (Win)
- Most Microsoft programs including Windows and Office. Visit www.mines.edu/ccit/microsoft and www.mines.edu/ccit/office-365 for details.
- Learn more about all our available software at: www.mines.edu/ccit/software.
I’m having trouble getting my phone or computer to connect to CSMwireless wi-fi. What am I doing wrong?
When you first connect to CSMwireless (or to the campus wired network) you will first need to register your computer, tablet, phone, or other device on the network once. To do so, choose CSMwireless and open a browser to any website. You should be redirected to the network-registration page. If your web browser is not automatically redirected to the registration page, please visit the registration site at http://netreg.mines.edu. Submit the form you see there, reboot your device, and you should then be online. (Or just bring your device by the Technology Support Center in CT156 and we’ll help get you set up properly.)
Can you help me install a fresh copy of Windows on my personal laptop?
Sure. Bring your computer and power supply (for laptops) to the TSC in CT156. (If it’s a desktop, just bring the tower.) We will advise and guide you through the process. You may want to call to set up an appointment (303.384.2345) ahead of time.
I can’t log into my email or school computer. Can you check my account?
Sure, come over to the TSC. Make sure you bring your BlasterCard or a government-issued form of ID.
My computer may be infected with a virus. Help?
Save your work and bring your computer and power supply (for laptops) to the TSC.
- Phone support: CCIT student consultants operate the Technology Support Center hotline at 303.384.2345. They are available to quickly guide you to the right solution, group, or service. We also have a growing collection of FAQs and HowTo documents:
- FAQfinder at faqfinder.mines.edu. Accessible from any computer with an Internet connection.
- The Y:\Common\Self-Help directory in your Windows file manager. Accessible from any campus lab computer. Our FAQs and HowTo documents answer questions like: “How do I map to a network drive?” “How do I add a network printer?” or “What CCIT web pages should I look at next?”
- The main CCIT website: ccit.mines.edu (or just click “Home” in the menu above).
- Our Getting Started pages: www.mines.edu/ccit/getting-started.
- Manage your online accounts: identity.mines.edu.
- For elevated support requests, you can open a Mines Help Center “Helpdesk” support request at helpdesk.mines.edu. Please provide as much information as possible so that we may better assist you.
The security of your online information and accounts starts with you. Here are some best practices for avoiding identity theft or worse.
1. Never share your passwords with anyone. Passwords are your keys into the Mines systems where your identity resides. This includes essential personal information, your work-related data, and more. Keep it private. Do not use your Mines password for other services. CCIT will never ask you for your password.
2. Do not download or upload copyrighted files that have not been legally purchased or licensed. This includes (among other things) BitTorrent-sourced music, movies, TV shows, software, and ebooks. Such behavior always comes to the attention of the School in honoring the national Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) laws. Packaging malware as other kinds of content is a common way for criminals to take over your machine — you can sometimes be grabbing more than just an illegal copy of Game of Thrones!
3. Always run security software on your machines to give yourself greater protection. Windows users should activate Microsoft Defender (www.mines.edu/ccit/software-title/antivirus) or opt for a more full-featured program. Though macOS and Linux are attacked less-frequently, running an antivirus program on those devices is also wise, particularly if you share USB flash drives with others. Talk with our Technology Support Center (CT156) staff for recommendations about appropriate antivirus software.
4. Keep your machines up-to-date by ensuring that you have auto-updates enabled where possible. This does a good job in keeping your base operating system updated, along with your preferred web-browsers and any extensions you might use. Other packages – like iTunes, Microsoft Office, Adobe applications, and so on – have similar auto-update mechanisms. All should be enabled and used.
5. Remember that large portions of the web attempt to track your online behavior and sites you visit. Install appropriate browser plugins to block some of these attempts. For better online privacy, recommended browsing extensions — available for the major web-browsers — include: Disconnect, Privacy Badger, and HTTPS Anywhere (search for the appropriate extension from your preferred web browser). These extensions keep tracking companies from piecing together your online activities.
6. Re-evaluate your plugins occasionally. Make sure any external browser plugins you use are both truly needed and kept up-to-date. If you don’t regularly use a plugin, set it to “Ask to Activate” or just disable it, or even uninstall it, altogether. Problematic plug-ins include packages like Java, Adobe Flash Player, Adobe Acrobat Reader (or other external PDF viewer), and Microsoft’s Silverlight, among others.
7. When browsing email messages, instant messages, or other social-media postings, always apply common sense. If something seems odd (a “bank” has sent this message to me from an @gmail.com address) or too good to be true (is someone really wanting to send me $25 million?), it is almost certainly an attempt to trick you. Ignore the message, delete it, and move on.
This can also apply where someone you know sends you an unexpected link or attachment. Be cautious. Has this individual really sent this message or attachment to you, or has their email account been compromised by a scammer? Can you check with them via some other method of communication?
Any message that asks you to “reply instantly, otherwise your account will be deleted,” or requests your username or password, is certainly a scam! Malware is usually installed by opening attachments or links… so use your brain before clicking on links or attachments. Again, CCIT will never ask for your password. No other reputable company would either.
8. Be careful what you share via social media. Only post items that you truly would not mind sharing with anyone and everyone in the world. For more private exchanges, ensure your privacy settings are configured correctly. If that post you just made ends up in front of your work colleagues, boss, friends, or family, is that okay? Items posted for everyone to see means that you could be sharing with identity thieves, who are extremely good at using and linking together all the information related to you. Identity theft is not something you want to deal with.
9. Be careful when using shared data sources, like physical USB sticks, portable hard drives, and other storage devices, including cloud storage. Always have your security software running to be able to scan, and perhaps block, access to suspicious files.
10. Don’t install random software on any of your computing devices. Only use known software that is from a known reputable source — otherwise, who knows what extra “goodies” you’ve just installed?!
For more about cyber-security and how to keep yourself safe, visit us at www.mines.edu/ccit/security.
You have access to a 120-plus Tflop HPC cluster for student and faculty research use.
Want to get started with supercomputing? Supercomputing is an increasingly important part of engineering and scientific research. Mines provides an advanced supercomputing cluster called “Mio” for the use of students and faculty who wish to take advantage of this extraordinary high-performance computing resource.
Mio holds many advantages for professors:
- There’s no need to manage their own HPC resources
- Professors can access other professors’ resources when allowed
- Mines supplies high-quality Infiniband network infrastructure, which greatly improves the scalability of multinode applications
- Cost is a reasonable $7,000 per node
- 8 -28 compute cores per node
- 2.4GHz – 3.06GHz
- 24-256 GB/Node
- Infiniband Interconnect
- 2 GPU nodes – 7.23 Tflops
- 240 TB parallel file system
- 2 Power8 w/GPU nodes
What’s in a name?
The name “Mio” is a play on words. It is a Spanish translation of the word “mine,” as in “belongs to me.” The phrase “The computer is mine” can be translated as “El ordenador es mío.”
Mines’ Big Iron Supercomputer
154 Tflops 17.4Tbytes 10,496 Cores 85KW
BlueM is Mines’ newest HPC platform (in addition to the “Mio” cluster). It is a unique machine, composed of two distinct compute platforms or partitions that share a common file system. Both platforms, as well as the file system, were purchased from IBM as a package. The common file system shared between the partitions can hold 480 TB. It has efficient support for parallel operation (that is, multiple cores accessing it at the same time). The two compute platforms are optimized for different purposes.
The smaller compute platform, in terms of capability, is AuN (“Golden”). It is a traditional HPC platform using standard Intel processors. It contains 144 compute nodes connected by a high-speed network. Each node contains 16 Intel SandyBridge compute cores and 64 GB of memory for a total 2,304 cores and 9,216 GB of memory. AuN is rated at 50 Tflops. It is housed in two double-wide racks with 72 nodes in each rack.
AuN is designed to run jobs that require more memory per core.
Mc2 (“Energy”) is an IBM BlueGene. Mc2 is housed in a single large 4’ x 4’ rack, currently half full with room for expansion. The BlueGene computer is designed from the ground up as an HPC platform. It has a very-high-speed network connecting the nodes so applications can scale well. Each node has a processor dedicated to systems operations in addition to the 16 cores that are available for users.
The processors on Mc2 are IBM “Power” processors. Mc2 has 512 compute nodes, each with 16 GB of memory for a total core count of 8,912 user cores and 8,912 GB of memory. Mc2 is rated at 104 Tflops.
The total power consumption of the system is about 85 kW with only 35 kW used by Mc2. Mc2 is water cooled. AuN currently runs with rear door heat exchangers but could run with air cooling only. BlueM is housed at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, in Golden, CO.
Mc2 is designed for jobs that can make use of a large number of cores.
Want to know more?