Communications Support Services

Student ITD Handbook

Introduction

Welcome to computing and information technology at MTSU!

MTSU's academic computing system is a Hewlett-Packard (HP) 9000 V2500. We call it "frank." Frank runs the UNIX operating system. With a computing account on frank, you can send electronic mail to other users on campus or around the world, search libraries and databases, and use software packages on MTSU's computing system.

The types of frank accounts available include individual accounts for students, faculty, and staff; class accounts that faculty may request for particular courses; and accounts for departments and student organizations.

This handbook provides information to get you started with your computing accounts and to introduce you to campus resources. Please contact ITD if you need any help: phone 898- 5345 or email itd@mtsu.edu.

^ top of page

Getting a student computing account

New and returning students will automatically have a computer account generated on the academic server. This account will serve as the student's email account while at MTSU as well as the username for PipelineMT. To activate the account, go to a Web browser, type in www.mtsu.edu/changepw, and follow the instructions. You will be asked to enter your student ID number and date of birth. After submitting this information, you will be asked to read and accept/deny the Computer and Network Acceptable Use Policy. Your login name will appear along with instructions for setting your password. You will be asked to enter your password twice for verification purposes. Your account will be ready in a matter of minutes. Creation of a student account means that the student is aware of and accepts MTSU's published policies and procedures. For more information, contact ITD at 898-5345.

^ Top of page

Quick Start : Getting connected

1. Connect to frank using telnet
If you are using a computer that is on the campus-wide network (such as computers in campus labs and offices), look for the Internet Applications folder. To connect to frank, click on the telnet icon (for IBM-compatible users) or the frank icon (for Macintosh users) in the Internet Applications folder. If you're using a computer at a campus lab, you may instead need to press the return key until you get the Local>; prompt. A Local>; prompt on your computer screen indicates that you've connected to the MTSU terminal server. At the Local>; prompt, type telnet frank <enter>;.

If you're connecting to frank from off campus or outside the campus network, you'll need to use a modem and terminal emulation package such as Kermit or HyperTerminal to dial into the MTSU system.

The parameters on your modem should be set as follows:

  • 8 data bits
  • 1 stop bit
  • no parity

Use your terminal emulation package and modem to dial one of the numbers listed below.

Dial-up numbers

  • on campus (14.4 kbps modems): 5908, 5176
  • on campus (28.8 kbps modems): 5350
  • off campus (14.4 kbps modems): (615) 898-5908, (615) 898-5176
  • off campus (28.8 kbps modems): (615) 898-5350

Once you have connected to the MTSU terminal server, you will see the Local>; prompt. (You may need to press <enter>; once or twice to get the prompt.) To connect to frank, at the Local>; prompt type telnet frank <enter>;.

2. Log in to frank

At the login: prompt, type the username that was assigned to you.

At the Password: prompt, type your frank password. Note that you will not see the password as you type it in.

When you first log in, you may see a message that your password has expired, and you'll be prompted to change the password to a new one of your choice. (See the section below titled "Concocting a Password" for guideline on choosing a secure password.)

Current password: type your original password <enter>;
New password: type the new password of your choice <enter>;
New password (again): type your new password again <enter>;

You may see the prompt for terminal type, e.g. TERM=(VT100). This prompts you to set the terminal type for your session.

For most users, vt100 is an acceptable terminal type. This is normally the default (as indicated in the parentheses after TERM=), so just press < enter>; at the TERM prompt to accept the default. (If the prompt is TERM=(hp), then type vt100 <enter>;.)

If you accidentally type something invalid at the TERM=(vt100) prompt, you may not be able to run programs such as Pine or Lynx. If you get an unknown terminal type error, type in export TERM=vt100 (or whatever terminal type you are using).

Once you're connected to frank, you'll see the system prompt ( frank $). Now you can access software available on frank. For example, type lynx at the frank $ prompt to start the Lynx Web browser.

3. Disconnect from frank
To disconnect from frank:

  1. Properly exit from the program you are using.
  2. At the system prompt (frank $), type exit <enter>;.
  3. If you used a modem to connect, when you get a Local>; prompt type LOGOUT or LO <enter>;. This will close the session and disconnect the phone line.

Uppercase or Lowercase Does It Matter?

Frank
The Hewlett Packard 9000 V2500, a.k.a. frank, runs the UNIX operating system, which is case sensitive. That means you'll need to type instructions to frank using the correct format of uppercase or lowercase letters.

Administrative Systems
The administrative systems consist of Alpha servers running the VMS operating system. These systems are not case sensitive.

^ Top of page

Your Frank password

Changing Your Frank password

If you want to change your password, at the system prompt type passwd and press <enter>;.

frank $ passwd

The computer will prompt you for the old password.

Current password: your_current_password <enter>;

You will then be asked for the new password.

New password: your_new_password <enter>;.

You'll be asked to enter the new password a second time for verification.

New password (again): your_new_password <enter>;.

Students will also be able to change their password via the Web at www.mtsu.edu/changepw

Concocting a password

Your frank password should contain six to eight characters with at least two alphabetic characters and at least one non-alphabetic character. It is also important that you try to choose a secure password.

A weak password provides an easy way for hackers to get into computing systems. You can help keep the MTSU computing system safe from hackers and other n'er-do-wells by choosing your password wisely.

Weak passwords include the following:

  • part or all of any name, even if spelled backwards or combined with numbers
  • any dates
  • social security or drivers license numbers
  • any word that can be found in a dictionary (English or other), even if it is combined with a few numbers
  • any simple string, such as "abc123"
  • passwords written on paper and stuck on your computer equipment, on your desk, or in a drawer
  • passwords entered while someone is watching you type

To create a good password, you need to devise a system for combining letters and numbers according to some rule that you can remember but that would not likely be discovered by someone else.

A secure password is nonsensical and may combine uppercase letters, lowercase letters, numerical characters, or punctuation. One method is to think of a sentence that you can remember and then use the first letter or two from each word. For example, the sentence "Elvis ate 32 hot dogs yesterday!" would produce the password "Ea32hdy!"

If you forget your password

If you forget your frank password, connect to www.mtsu.edu/changepw and follow the instructions presented there. ITD can also reset your password if you forget it. Come by the ITD office in the basement of Cope Administration Building, and be sure to bring a valid photo ID such as your MTSU ID card.

^ Top of page

Commonly used UNIX commands

ll
Gives a directory listing of files and subdirectories in the current or specified directory
cd (directory name)

Changes current directory to specified directory
- Example: frank $ cd mydir -- or use of CD <enter>; to go back to your home directory from any subdirectory

pwd
Displays your parent (current) working directory
mkdir (subdirectory name)
Creates a new subdirectory
-- Example: frank $ mkdir mydir
rmdir (subdirectory name)
Removes or deletes a subdirectory
-- Example: frank $ rmdir mydir -- You can only remove a subdirectory when its empty
cp (source path and filename) (target path and filename)
Copies an existing file to a new file or new location
-- Example: frank $ cp myfile.doc myfile.bak
mv (source path and filename) (target path and filename)
Moves an existing file to a new file or new location
rm (source path and filename)
Removes or deletes specified file
-- Example: frank $ rm myfile.doc
chmod (group u, g, o, or a) (+ or - attributes r, w, x) (subdirectory or filename)
Changes a group's (user, group, other, or all) permissions (read, write, and execute) on specified subdirectory or filename
-- Example: frank $ chmod u+r myfiles would add (+), read (r) access for the owner (u) or the file myfile
passwd
Changes your system password
man command
Accesses manual pages for information on the specified UNIX command -- Another useful option for man is man -k keyword to search the man pages for a keyword
lpansi filename
Prints a file from frank to a local printer (i.e. the printer attached to your PC)
lp -d dest filename

Prints a file ( filename) from frank to a specified printer ( dest) on the campus network
-- Example: frank $ LP -dcs_line myfile will print the file myfile to the line printer in KOM 351 (cs_line)

^ top of page

Email: Basics of PipelineMT Email

PipelineMT is available from any computer (on or off campus) with an Internet connection. You can access PipelineMT at www.mtsu.edu/pipelinemt or by clicking on the PipelineMT link on the MTSU home page. After logging into PipelineMT, click on the email icon at the top.

Reading email

When you enter PipelineMT email, three windows will respectively display a list of your folders, a list of email message headers currently in your inbox, and an area for reading the selected email's contents. Clicking on the message subject in the inbox will display the email message contents.

Sending email

To send an email, click on the Compose link. This will open a new window where you can enter the addresses of recipients, a subject, and the text of the message. At the bottom of the Compose window are check boxes for saving a copy to the SENT folder, adding a virtual signature card, and requesting a read receipt. Each of these may be set permanently via the Options tab. At the bottom are buttons for attaching a file, saving the email as a draft, and performing spell checking.

Receiving email

When you first enter PipelineMT email, it will check for new messages. You can check for additional new email by clicking in the Get Mail link at the top. This will reload the page and check for new messages on the server.

^ Top of page

Email: Basics of Mulberry

Cyrusoft Mulberry is available for email at campus computer labs. The instructions below will help you get started with Mulberry. More detailed information is available on the Web at www.mtsu.edu/~email/email/mulberry.html.

Startup

When you start Mulberry, you will see a window that lists your mail folder(s). Double clicking on a folder will bring up another window that will list your messages with columns like From/To, Date Sent, and Thread. The Thread column is the subject of the message.

Sending email

To send an email message, choose New message from the File menu. This action will pop up a Draft window where you may enter the recipient(s) of the message, a subject, and the text of the message. There is also an Attach button for file attachments.

Receiving email

When you first bring up Mulberry, it will check for new messages. To check for new messages on the server after starting Mulberry, choose Check Mail from the Mailboxes menu. This will query the server and update the messages listed in your folder window. The Inbox folder is the default window used to list your messages.

Reading email

To read a message, double click on it from a folder window's list of messages. This will bring up a window where you may read the message.

Keyboard Shortcuts
(Press all the keys indicated at the same time to perform the function)
 
PC

Macintosh

check for new mail
ctrl+L
cmd+L
new message
ctrl+N
cmd+N
read previous message
alt+[
cmd+[
read next message
alt+]
cmd+]
reply to current message
ctrl+R
cmd+R
forward message
ctrl+J
cmd+J
print current message
ctrl+P
cmd+P

^ top of page

Email: Basics of Pine

You can also use Pine to send and receive email on frank.

To invoke Pine, type pine at the frank $ prompt:

frank $ pine

Then log in to the Cyrus mail server: At the prompt ENTER LOGIN NAME: [name], press return to accept the username displayed. Then type your frank password and press return.

When you start Pine, a menu screen will be displayed. You can select from the menu by using the arrow keys or by typing in the letter listed in front of each option. You can quit Pine by following the instructions shown on the screen.

Reading email messages in Pine

Whenever you receive a message (it doesn't matter where the message was from), the system keeps your new message in Pine's INBOX. The following steps show how to read a new mail message using Pine.

  1. Start Pine by typing pine at the frank $ prompt.
  2. Select L (Folder list) by typing L (or l) or using arrow keys to select the option and press <enter>;.
  3. Select INBOX and press <enter>;.
  4. Select the message you want to read and press <enter>;.

Note: You may select I (FOLDER INDEX) to open INBOX if your current mail folder is INBOX. The current open folder is indicated at the top of the Pine screen.

While you are reading a message, you can forward (press f) this message to someone, save (press s) this message in a specific folder, reply (press r) to this message, export (press e) this message to an external file on disk, delete (press d) this message, and print (press %) this message.

Other commands are available as well. Pine lists the commands at the bottom part of the screen for your convenience.

Printing Email Messages

The following example demonstrates printing a mail message in Pine to your local printer (the printer attached to your PC). To print messages on one of the network printers, specify the print queue name at the printer setup screen (select S Setup from the Pine main menu followed by P Printer).

  1. Type pine at the frank $ prompt.
  2. Select L (Folder list) by typing L (or l) or using arrow keys to select the option and press <enter>;.
  3. Select INBOX with arrow keys and press <enter>; to open the incoming message folder.
  4. Use the arrow keys to select the message to print.
  5. Press % (Print).
  6. At the prompt Print message # using "attached to ansi"? type y or press <enter>; key.
Sending email

You can send mail to users at MTSU or any other Internet address. The format of an Internet address is username@nodename.domain - for example, jsmith@mtsu.edu.

  1. Type pine at the frank $ prompt.
  2. Type C to compose your message or arrow down to that option on Pine's main menu. The message template will be displayed.
  3. Complete the necessary header information. The To: field is the only required field.
    1. Type the recipient's email address at the To: field. If you're sending a message to another frank user, you can just type their username at the To: prompt, for example To: jsmith. To send a message to another Internet location, type username@nodename.domain at the To: prompt, for example To: jsmith@uga.edu.
    2. At the CC: field, type the email addresses of people to whom you want to send a copy of the message. Use a comma to separate multiple addresses.
    3. In the Attachment: field, specify which file or files you want to attach to your message. The files must reside on frank. If your file is on a PC or Mac, you'll need to transfer the file to frank using an FTP (file transfer protocol) program before attaching it. Contact the ITD Help Desk at (615) 898-5345 if you need help with FTP.
    4. Enter the subject of your message in the Subject: field.
  4. Enter your message. When you finish, press and hold the Control key (Ctrl) and press the letter X.

Information about sending, canceling, and getting help are displayed at the bottom of the Pine message screen. (The ^ character means to press and hold the Control key.)

Saving email messages

Pine places your messages in folders. Every message available to you in Pine is in a named folder. Pine keeps three folders for you: inbox, sent-mail, and saved-messages. You may also create many others.

Inbox is where your new messages are kept until you save them to a folder or delete them. Pine keeps a copy of all the messages that you send in the folder Sent-mail. Saved-messages is a folder where you can store messages that you want to keep for several days.

To keep from cluttering up your inbox unnecessarily, it is a good idea to read the messages and delete them or save them to a folder, deleting them from your Inbox. On the Index screen, the command to save the currently selected messages is S.

Pine allows you to create as many folders as you need. From the Folder List screen, you can create a new folder by using the command A (Add) and typing the name you want to give your new folder.

You can also save an email message in Pine while you have the message displayed for reading. Press S, and at the prompt type the name of the folder (new or existing) where you want to save the message.

^ Top of page

Internet Basics

The Internet is a network that ties together computer networks. The protocol called TCP/IP enables all these computers to communicate with each other by specifying how information will be broken up and passed along the networks and how it will be reassembled once it reaches its destination.

By connecting different networks together, the Internet allows users on one network to communicate with users on another network, to access the resources of other computer systems, to transfer files, and to search indexes and databases. The basic components of the Internet are electronic mail, telnet for remote connection, and FTP for file transfers.

^ Top of page

The Web

What is the Web?

The World Wide Web provides a hypertext-based navigation tool for the Internet. Hypertext is a method for linking documents together non-sequentially.

Links within a document are identified by some sort of highlighting, image, or icon. If you choose to follow a link, you may jump between documents or between computing sites.

The Web integrates many different kinds of Internet resources. It deals in a wide variety of information including text, video, audio, and data.

And it works with many Internet tools such as FTP, gopher, newsgroups, and telnet sessions. The process of retrieving the document you want - of making a link - is accomplished using those tools, but that work goes on in the background.

Internet Addresses

Every user and every computer on the Internet has a unique address. The general form for a user address is username@nodename.domain. The nodename identifies the site (such as MTSU). The trailing domain is often one of the following:

:: com company or commercial institution or organization
:: edu educational institution
:: gov government site
:: mil military site
:: net network gateway or administrative host
:: org private organization that does not fit the other classes of domains

Your MTSU email address is your_username@mtsu.edu. (You get your username when you set up your computing account.)

Accessing the Web

Text-based Access

Your computing account on frank provides only text-based access to the Internet (i.e., you can get information but you can not view images, see video, or listen to audio).

Use the Web browser Lynx to surf the Internet using your frank account. Because Lynx does not have to download graphics, it tends to run faster than a graphical browser. Type lynx at the frank $ prompt to start Lynx.

Graphical Access

For graphical access on campus, you'll need a computer that's directly connected to the campus network. This includes an office, library, or lab computer that is connected to the network and has Web browser software such as Netscape or Internet Explorer installed.

For graphical Internet access from outside the campus network - e.g., if you're using a modem to access the Internet, you'll need to sign up with a commercial Internet service provider (for example America Online, AT&T WorldNet, Concentric Network, IBM Internet Connection, MCI Internet, or MindSpring). Note that ITD does not provide assistance with SLIP/PPP emulation software.

Web browsers

A Web browser is a program such as Lynx, Netscape, or Microsoft Internet Explorer that helps users work with the Web by displaying documents and making links between computing sites.

Example 1: Basic Web navigation using Lynx

Type lynx at the frank $ prompt to launch Lynx.

Use the arrow keys on your keyboard to navigate the Web using Lynx: up and down arrows to move through menu selections, right arrow to follow a link, left arrow to go back to the previous menu item.

Within a document, scroll through the pages using the space bar to scroll forward and the hyphen key to move back.

Lynx lists commands at the bottom of the screen for your convenience. For example, type G to go to a specific Web page. At the prompt URL to open, type in the address of the desired Web page. (The URL, or Uniform Resource Locator, is a way of specifying where something is on the Internet. For example, the URL for MTSU's Web page is http://www.mtsu.edu.)

Bookmarks

Use the Bookmark feature if you find a Web site that you really like and you want to save its address so you can easily return to it. With the desired site highlighted, type A to add bookmark, then type L to save that link.

The site's address will be added to your bookmark list. View your bookmark list by typing V. To go to one of the sites on the list, arrow down to the desired site, then press the right arrow key.

Type q to quit Lynx.

Example 2: Basic Web navigation using Netscape 4.x

On a Web page, use your mouse to click on links. A link might be a highlighted word, an image, or icon. Your mouse pointer becomes a pointing hand when you are pointing to a link on a Web page.

If you have the address (URL) of a specific Web site that you want to visit, go to that site using the site address box located toward the top of the Netscape window.

Place the mouse pointer in the address box and click to set an insertion point where you'll start typing. Type the full address in the box and press <enter>; to go to that site.

You can also use standard Windows or Macintosh copy and paste commands to copy a Web URL from a document such as a word processing document or email message and paste it into the address box.

Use the Back and Forward buttons at the top of the browser window to move backward and forward among Web pages that you've viewed during a browsing session.

Pull down the Go menu to select any of the Web sites that you've visited during that browsing session.

If you find a Web site that you really like and you want to save its address so that you can easily return to it, pull down the Bookmarks menu and select Add Bookmark. That site will be added to your Bookmark list. Then, whenever you want to go to that site, you can pull down the Bookmark menu, select that site, and the browser will connect to the site.

Searching the Web

Many search tools are available on the Web to help you find information. Tools include Alta Vista, Excite, Infoseek, Lycos, WebCrawler, and Yahoo.

Your Web browser provides a Web search option that links you to these search engines. (In Netscape 4.x, for example, click on the Search icon along the top menu bar; or from the Edit menu, select Search the Internet.) You can also type the URL of the search engine in the browser's site location box or use the G command in Lynx.

Different search engines sometimes expect different syntax and have different options. Before searching for a topic, look around the site for tips or help that will tell you how to optimize your results with the appropriate search criteria.

Regardless of the engine you are using, you should be as specific as possible because searches on general topics typically yield an unmanageably high number of results. Most search engines will list the results in order of relevancy, based on the number of hits on the specified search terms within the document.

Accessing a WebCT Course Page

Your instructor(s) may choose to use the WebCT online course management system to support coursework. These Web pages may be used to provide course materials, allow you to communicate with your instructor and classmates, complete assignments and check grades. To access your WebCT course page:

  1. Click on the PipelineMT link on the main MTSU home page and login using your MTSU username and PIN.
  2. Click on the My Courses Tab.
  3. Click on the course name. When you click on a course name, it will automatically log you into WebCT if your instructor has activated it for that course.

For more information on using WebCT, visit the MTSU WebCT support page at www.mtsu.edu/~webctsup.

Web URLs

The Uniform Resource Locator (URL - pronounced "U-R-L") is a way of specifying where something is on the Internet. For example, the URL for ITD's Web page is http://www.mtsu.edu/~itd
:: The first part of the URL specifies the access method used to retrieve the document, such as http (which stands for HyperText Transfer Protocol and is used for hypermedia documents).
:: A machine is identified after the two slashes.
:: The last part of the URL may specify the location further, such as a directory and file name.

Creating a Home Page

Students, faculty, and staff can use their frank accounts to create Web home pages.

For useful Web page development information see http://www.mtsu.edu/web. Here you'll find a beginners' guide to Web page development, including a Web page generator.

The Homepage Generator enables MTSU students, faculty, and staff to develop Web pages in an easy-to-use, browser-based environment. You can also access the Homepage Generator by typing homepage at the frank prompt. (You must have a frank account to use the generator.)

Some MTSU URLs of Interest

:: MTSU home page
:: Information Technology Division
:: Walker Library
:: Phillips Bookstore
:: Human Resource Services
:: WebMT for Employees
:: Student programming/special events
:: Blue Raider athletics
:: News and Public Affairs

The Homepage Generator allows an MTSU frank account holder to select from a variety of initial layouts, enter contact information, and choose additional pages including personal information, professional activities, resume, courses, and interesting links pages. A sample page is displayed and may be adjusted until the user has the desired layout.

Take a look at the MTSU Computer and Network Acceptable Use Policy to be sure your Web page content is not in violation.

For example, no obscene material may be posted on an MTSU Web page. Be careful not to post copyrighted material on your Web page without permission from the copyright holder. In addition, you cannot use your MTSU Web page to advertise products, books, or services for which you'd like to receive money.

If you wish to place advertisements on the network, you will need to obtain an account from a commercial Internet service provider.

^ Top of page

Netmenu

Netmenu provides easy, menu-driven access to Internet tools. To access netmenu, type netmenu at the frank $ prompt: frank $ netmenu

Access the following network tools and resources with netmenu:

  • Pine Pine is an email facility used to transfer simple documents and letters between Internet users. (Also from the frank prompt: frank $ pine)
  • Lynx Lynx allows the user to search for and display information found on the Web. Lynx is a text-based (non graphical) Web browser. (Also from the frank prompt: frank $ lynx)
  • University Library's Voyager Online Card Catalog
  • Library Databases Connect to library databases such as InfoTrac and Lexis-Nexis.
  • View Directory of Files Used to list the files of the current UNIX directory and display their attributes.
  • Browse File Displays the contents of a file. Use "q" to exit.
  • Delete File Delete a user-specified file.
  • Print File Print a file, selecting a printer from a list of several, or specifying a different one.
  • Edit File Edit a file using the Pico editor.
  • Finger This function is used to display information about users on a system, including their addresses. (Also from the frank prompt: frank $ finger username@nodename.domain Note that if the username you are checking is on the same system as your own account, it is sufficient to type only finger username.)
  • Whois The Whois program searches the Whois database at the Internet Information Center (INTERNIC) to identify information about an Internet site. The program can be used to display the complete description of a site domain or to identify those individuals who are registered contacts at a given site. (Also from the frank prompt: frank $ whois nodename.domain)
  • FTP File Transfer Protocol is the primary method of transferring files over the Internet. (Also from the frank prompt: frank $ ftp nodename.domain)
  • Telnet This is the primary method for establishing an interactive connection with another computer system via the Internet. (Also from the frank prompt: frank $ telnet nodename.domain)
  • Kermit The Kermit server provides a method of doing file transfers between a microcomputer and a remote host (such as frank). The three most common commands are Get, Put, and Finish. The Get command causes a file to be downloaded from the remote host to the microcomputer using Kermit File Transfer Protocol. The Put command causes a file to be uploaded from the microcomputer to the host using Kermit ftp. The Finish command ends Kermit server and releases control back to netmenu.

Netmenu also provides options for managing your files on frank: view directory of files, browse file, delete file, print file, and edit file.

^ Top of page

Master Classrooms

Students and faculty at MTSU are exploring new ways of learning and teaching in master classrooms located throughout campus. These classrooms are specially equipped with computer, media, projection, communication, and control capabilities as well as connection to the campus network. Typically the master classroom contains one computer that can be used by instructors and students for presentations, simulations, online access, and multimedia. Learn more at www.mtsu.edu/itd; click on Server, Classroom and Desktop Services from the ITD Areas and Staff menu, then click on Microcomputing and Master Classroom Support.

^ Top of page

Instructional Technology Support Center

The Instructional Technology Support Center (ITSC), operated by the College of Education and Behavioral Science and located in the McWherter Learning Resources Center, provides training and support for the use of instructional technology by pre-service teachers in the MTSU teacher preparation programs, MTSU faculty and graduate students, and in-service teachers in Tennessee's public school system. The ITSC houses one of three university-wide computer centers on campus. Macintosh and Pentium computers are available at the ITSC for use by any MTSU student with a valid MTSU ID. Also available at the ITSC are multimedia development stations where graduate students and faculty can create multimedia projects with the assistance of ITSC staff. The Instructional Media Resources unit of the ITSC houses videotapes, computer software, CD-ROMs, and DVDs for student use on?site and for faculty checkout. A large collection of audiotapes, including popular books on tape, is available for checkout by faculty and students. The Audio-Visual Services unit has audio-visual equipment for classroom use, and a videoconferencing facility provides educational programming for rural K-12 schools. The Philip C. Howard Music Library is also located in the ITSC. The music library houses audio and video recordings, scores, and reference items. Scores may be checked out by anyone with a valid MTSU ID. Learn more about the ITSC on the Web at www.mtsu.edu/~itsc, or call 898?5191. Information on the music library is available at www.mtsumusic.com (click on "Library";) or by calling 898-2751.

^ Top of page

University computer labs

Students, faculty, and staff with a current MTSU ID may use computers in University Computer Labs located in Business and Aerospace Building S137, Kirksey Old Main 350/351, and at the Instructional Technology Support Center (ITSC) in McWherter Learning Resources Center, rooms 101, 101A, and 101B. (Get information about the labs on the MTSU Web page: click on Raider Data.)

In addition to the University Computer Labs, many departments have labs for classes, research, and general use. Computer labs are also provided in Corlew, Lyon, Smith, and WoodFelder residence halls and Womack Lane Apartments for those who live in student housing.

For more information:

  • Jennings A. Jones
    College of Business University Computer Lab
    Business and Aerospace Building S137
    www.businesslab.mtsu.edu
    or call ext. 5515
  • Computer Science Department University Computer Lab
    KOM 350/351
    www.mtsu.edu/~csdept/csci_lab.html
    or call 898-2144
  • McWherter Learning Resources Center
    University Computer Lab
    LRC 101 (Instructional Media Resources Computer Center),
    LRC 101A (Pentium Lab), and LRC 101B (Pentium Lab)
    www.mtsu.edu/~itsc
    or check the monitor in the lobby of
    McWherter LRC, or call 898-5191

^ Top of page

The Walker Library

Walker Library provides access to an online catalog (Voyager), numerous electronic databases, and Internet resources. These and other services are offered at the library's Web site ( www.mtsu.edu/~library). In addition to online library resources, the library provides access to scanners, printers, the Microsoft Office Suite, and adaptive technology.

Via the library's catalog, Voyager ( voyager.mtsu.edu), you may find books, periodicals, and other materials that are in the Walker Library as well as collections in the Center for Popular Music, Instructional Media Resources, and the Music Library. The Course Reserves section of Voyager allows you to find materials that have been placed on reserve by your professors and, in some cases, to obtain a copy of the class readings online. To check out materials from Walker Library, you must use your MTSU ID card.

Librarians have organized collections of discipline-specific electronic resources on the Research Gateway ( www.mtsu.edu/~library/gateway.html). Types of sources included are electronic journals, full-text databases, citation databases, and suggested Web sites as well as recommended print resources. Examples include InfoTrac OneFile and LexisNexis Academic. InfoTrac OneFile covers all subjects in more than 8,000 periodical titles and includes over a million full-text periodical articles. LexisNexis Academic contains the full text of thousands of newspapers from all over the world plus many legal, government, and business and industry sources.

More than 300 computers are located within the library for student use. Access to most of the library's electronic resources is provided via the on-campus network and remote login access as well. When you are accessing the databases from off-campus, you will be prompted for your student email username and password (not Pipeline password) that will be used to verify that you are an MTSU student.

Laptop computers are available for use in the library at any of some 800 additional data connections in the library building. Students who own laptop computers and 10BaseT network cards may also connect to the network via these data connections. Instructions are available at www.mtsu.edu/~library/computing.html.

For immediate assistance regarding library resources when the library is open, please contact the librarians at the Reference Desk (898-2817, press 3). To submit questions online, see the Online Library Services section of the Library's Web page and choose the Ask A Librarian Reference Service. A member of the library faculty will answer questions within 24 hours during the week, and by the next workday on weekends and holidays

^ Top of page

Telephone/Telecommunication Services

The Telecommunication Services area of ITD is responsible for all matters relating to MTSU's telephone service and is committed to providing and maintaining a quality service. Contact Telecommunication Services at 898-2991, or visit the Web site at www.mtsu.edu/itdtele.

Placing calls

On-campus calls may be made from campus phones by dialing the MTSU four-digit extension number. From off campus, include the appropriate prefix, 898, 494, or 904.

Local calls may be made from campus phones by dialing 9 and the desired seven-digit local number. Some courtesy phones are restricted to campus calls only.

Operator assistance

Dial 0 for campus directory service from any campus phone. For campus operator assistance from outside campus, dial (615) 898- 2300. Operator assistance is provided 8:00 a.m. ­ 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, with an automated directory for after hours and holidays. Courtesy phones are located in the lobbies of main buildings across campus.

Prepaid calling cards

Prepaid calling cards for students, faculty, and staff can be purchased from a vending machine near the Post Office in Keathley University Center. The prepaid calling card allows pre-purchase of $5-$20 worth of long distance calls.

Residence hall phone services

MTSU residence hall rooms have one touch-tone telephone line with two telephone jacks. There is no charge for local calling. Residents provide their own telephone instruments.

Residence hall telephone lines include these special features:

  • call waiting
  • three-way conference
  • call transfer
  • last number redial
  • data privacy on demand

Long Distance

Star1 for resident students
MTSU Telecommunications Services offers the MTSU long distance service, Star1. This service allows students to make low-cost long distance telephone calls from any campus residence telephone. For more information about star1, call 898- 4636.

Qwest for 0+

Qwest is the provider of 0+ operator services. If you have questions, contact Qwest customer service at 1-877-885-7830. Calls may be charged using any of the following:

  • phone company calling cards
  • Some credit cards
  • third party
  • collect

Voice mail

Voice mail - a computer system for recording, storing, retrieving, and forwarding phone messages-is available at very low rates to all students. Each subscription includes a personal voice mailbox protected by a passcode. The voice mailbox allows recording of a personal greeting, stored messages, and distribution lists.

Contact the voice mail coordinator at 898-2206 to subscribe to this service or submit a student voice mail order form online at www.mtsu.edu/itdtele.

Private Telephone Line

Private telephone lines for resident students are available for purchase on a semester or yearly basis, if additional telephone cable is available for use in the resident dorm. The following features are included with private telephone lines:

  • call waiting
  • three-way calling
  • call transfer
  • last number redial
  • data privacy on demand
  • voice mail

Contact the voice mail coordinator at ext. 2206 for more information.

^ Top of page

Your MTSU ID card

The MTSU ID card identifies faculty, staff, and students for access to campus services and privileges. Use the ID card to cash checks; buy tickets to campus events; receive health services; and be admitted to athletic events, the Recreation Center, campus computer labs, and residence hall computer labs. The ID card also serves as a meal and library card. Note that you'll need your MTSU ID card to pick up any financial aid checks as well.

When you deposit money into a Raider Fund$ account, the ID becomes a debit card for use across campus. Use Raider Fund$ for purchases at Phillips Bookstore, as a library copy card, to buy a snack or soft drink at most campus vending machines, or purchase meals at any of the food service locations on campus.

There are two ways to activate a Raider Fund$ account and to add money to the account. Go by the cashier windows in Cope Administration Building or use a self-service terminal in the University Library's Copy Center. Contact the Business Office at (615) 898- 5443 with questions about Raider Fund$.

The ID office is located at Murphy Center, track level, northwest corner. Hours at the ID office during non-registration times are Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m.­4:30 p.m. (For evening students, ID cards are made in Peck Hall room 101D. Call (615) 898- 5611 for office hours.)

If you lose your ID card, it will be invalidated as soon as the loss is reported. Call the ID office at (615) 898- 5523, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.­4:30 p.m. After hours, report a loss to University Police, (615) 898- 2424.

Come by the ID office during regular office hours to have a replacement card made. There is a $10 fee for replacement of lost or stolen IDs. If the card breaks, bring the damaged card to the ID office. Call (615) 898- 5523 with questions about the MTSU ID.

^ top of page

PipelineMT/WebMT

PipelineMT ( www.mtsu.edu/pipelinemt) is a portal that gives students, faculty, and employees single sign-on, secure access to Internet and MTSU resources such as WebMT and WebCT, personal data, calendars, and email. Students can receive email directly from their instructors and use virtual chat rooms available for each course via PipelineMT. Announcements can be targeted to groups of students based on majors and/or enrolled classes. Online tutorials and additional information can be found on the login page of PipelineMT. Minimum browser requirements are Netscape 4.79 and Internet Explorer 5.5 for Windows, Netscape 4.79 and Internet Explorer 5.1 for Macintosh, or AOL 6 for Windows or Macintosh. Netscape 6.0 and 6.1 are not supported.

PipelineMT is the only avenue by which students can access WebMT services. Once logged into PipelineMT, click on the following: WebMT tab, and Student & Financial Aid. Students can then access the following functions:

  • registration/drop/add/withdrawal
  • confirm registration
  • course offerings
  • degree audit
  • extensive course search options
  • grade inquiry
  • view class schedule
  • view grade/transcript holds
  • view change address
  • view registration holds
  • view account balance
  • view transcript
  • pay fees with a credit card
  • SGA voting

PipelineMT is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. However, WebMT services are only available from 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. WebMT may be unavailable at certain times due to maintenance, billing, or grade processing. See the MTSU Class Schedule Book for more information.

^ Top of page

TRAM (Telephone Response at Middle)

With TRAM (Telephone Response at Middle), you can use a touch-tone phone to register for classes, drop and add classes, check grades, get fee information, or pay fees with a credit card. Also use TRAM to get information on financial aid and admissions applications. Use a touch-tone phone to call TRAM at 898-2000 (on campus dial 9-898-2000). TRAM is available seven days a week, 6:00 a.m. - 2:00 a.m. (TRAM may be unavailable at certain times due to maintenance, billing, or grade processing. See the MTSU Class Schedule Book for more information.)

^ Top of page

InfoMT kiosks

InfoMT kiosks provide touchscreen access to information and services. The kiosks (similar to bank ATM machines) are located at the Business and Aerospace Building, Keathley University Center, Kirksey Old Main, and the University Library.

Access personal data and view and print campus maps at InfoMT. Kiosks are available 6:00 a.m. - 2:00 a.m. daily. (Note: some buildings are locked prior to 2:00 a.m.)

Enter student ID number and PAC to view and print the following:

  • account balance
  • admissions status
  • course availability
  • degree audit (print only) progress toward completion of an undergraduate degree program
  • summary of financial aid awards offered, accepted, and paid
  • amount of financial aid award used
  • financial aid history (print only)
  • grades
  • class schedule
  • unofficial course transcript (print only)

General information available includes:

  • frequently asked questions
  • important dates
  • phone directories for departments, faculty, and staff
  • calendar of events

There is a small charge for printed output except for free campus maps.

^ Top of page

Wireless Connectivity

Wireless Internet access is available at many locations on campus, including outdoor areas, lounges, eateries, and classroom buildings.

To access the wireless network, university students and employees must have a laptop computer and "WiFi"; 802.11b compatible PC card. Wireless service on campus is limited to university students and employees who register for wireless service with the MTSU Information Technology Division's Network Services.

Go to www.mtsu.edu/~wireless to register and find links to a coverage area map and additional information on plans for the wireless network.

^ Top of page

Student Technology Access Fee

The Student Technology Access Fee (TAF) is used for direct student benefit, including new and improved high technology laboratories and classrooms, appropriate network and software, computer and other equipment, and technological improvements in instruction.

TAF helps students gain hands-on experience with the latest computer-based and discipline-specific technologies. For example, the funds may go toward computer lab upgrades, new computer labs, new computer equipment and software, multimedia and master classrooms, recording and production equipment, and library resources.

Learn more at http://www.mtsu.edu/~pvpaa/techacc.

The life of MTSU Student Technology Access Fee dollars

MTSU students pay the student Technology Access Fee (TAF) along with their other fees.

In past years, the Academic Computing Committee and the Technology Task Force made recommendations for allocations of (TAF) funds. In 2001-2002, the two committees were combined into a standing committee appointed by the university's president. The new committee is called the Instructional Technology Committee and includes students, faculty, and staff representatives.

TAF expenditure recommendations from the Instructional Technology Committee are approved by the MTSU president and are submitted to the TBR vice chancellor for finance for approval.

As soon as the proposal receives board approval, the purchases begin. The goal is to get the technology to students as soon as possible.

See where your money is going

Equipment purchased using funds from the student Technology Access Fee is tracked to be sure it is being used as intended. Watch for the special label on each piece of equipment that shows it is a result of technology fees at work.

^ Top of page

Additional help and information

Online

MAN pages on Frank

The man (short for manual) pages are the primary source of online information for HP (frank) users. To learn how to use a command, type man followed by the name of that command. Example: frank $ man passwd. Another useful option for man is man -k keyword to search the man pages for a keyword.

Help with Software

Most software packages include online help. If you're working with a software package and you need help, check the menu bars across the top of the screen.

Help on the Web

Information is available on MTSU's Web site at www.mtsu.edu and ITD's site at www.mtsu.edu/itd.

Via email

Send an email message to ITD's Help Desk at itd@mtsu.edu.

Via phone

Call ITD's Help Desk at 898- 5345.

^ Top of page

 

Help Desk

Student Technology Assistant Program