New Member Guide

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Hello, and welcome to the Computer Science Club! Thanks for joining. The office staff who signed you up should have told you about this stuff, but just as a refresher, here it is again.


  • Our office is MC 3036/3037 (we occupy both rooms) and we're across the hall (but distinct from) the MathSoc office.
  • Our club doesn't have weekly meetings or anything like that. If the door is open, we are open (even if it's 3 in the morning on Sunday). Feel free to drop in and say hi!
  • The office closes when the last office staff leaves the room, and the office opens when somebody with a key comes by. If you're interested in becoming office staff, look out for the termly office staff training event or ask around the office.
  • We have staplers by the door farthest from MathSoc. Even if you're not a member, you're allowed to use them. You don't even have to ask (and in fact, we'd prefer if you didn't. Office regulars spend a good amount of time telling people that yes, they can use the staplers).
  • We sell pop, chips, chocolate bars and other snacks. Prices are on the fridge door. Pay the red cup in the fridge.


We hold a different set of events every term, but the same types of events come up again and again. Watch out for emails about:

  • Industry tech talks. In the past, we've gotten folks from various tech companies to talk about algorithms, database design decisions and other things.
  • UNIX 10X tutorials. Don't know how to use the commandline? Come out and learn with us. Know how to use the commandline? Come out and help us answer questions.
  • Member talks. Do you have a burning desire to talk about AVL trees? No? Well, if you want to talk about a computer sciencey topic that's close to your heart, send an email to exec at with a talk abstract (a paragraph we can put on a poster to describe your talk) and we'll see if we can make something happen.
  • Code parties. We eat food, talk and write code. Code parties happen several times a term.


As a member of the club, you have access to our machines, both servers in the machine room down the hall and desktops in our physical office. Keep in mind that your username is your quest userid (e.g. ctdalek) and your password starts out as the one you set when you joined the club for the first time. If you registered your account virtually, your password will have been emailed to you when you signed up. If this is the case, you will be prompted to change your password when you first login to any machine. You can also email syscom at any time to reset your password, if you've forgotten it or don't have the password email.

  • Your files are accessible on all of our machines
  • Keep in mind that the machines are shared among all of our members. Play nice. For example, caffeine is our web server. You are strongly advised not to run long, intensive jobs on it. Something like that is a better fit for hfcs, corn-syrup.
  • Use SSH for access to the machines in the server room.
    • If you don't know how to use the commandline, you can wait for our approximately termly UNIX 101 event, google for "how to use the command line", or ask around the office.
    • On all major operating systems except iOS (find Termius on the App Store) and Android (find Termux on FDroid), you already have the ssh command installed. If your userid is ctdalek and you want to use HFCS, just open up a terminal window (CMD on Windows) and type the following:

You will be asked for your CSC password and be prompted to go through DUO 2FA. If it is your first time logging in, you will be prompted to change your password. To avoid having to go through DUO, you can add an SSH key instead.

  • Our office terminals are turned off, rebooted and otherwise reset somewhat frequently.
  • If you forget your password, come by the office with your Watcard and some other form of ID. Regular office staff can't reset your password for you, but if there's someone on our Systems Committee hanging around, they can do this for you.
  • If you would like to change your password, log on to any of our machines and type kpasswd in a terminal. You will be prompted for your old password and be asked to type in your new password twice (just to make sure you didn't make a typo).
  • We have a MySQL daemon running, but only on our web server caffeine. Check out this page if you would like a database.
  • For technical questions (including package installation requests), send an email to our systems committee, syscom at

Web Hosting

You get web space with your CSC membership. Your website is visible at [1] (where ctdalek is replaced with your own userid, of course).

See Web Hosting for more information.


We have an IRC (internet relay chat) channel. Come hang out with us in #csc on If you are unfamiliar with IRC, you may want to read this guide.


  • See the Mail page.
  • The CSC gets a lot of requests to distribute Industry Opportunities to our members. We have a special opt-in mailing list for the people that want to hear about such things.
  • We have a low-volume general mailing list which we use to send out information about upcoming events.


There are books on the shelves lining the office. Feel free to drop by and read them.

You can borrow ones that don't have a sticker on them. There's no hard limit for how long at the moment, just make sure to give them back.

Only someone on libcom can check out books for people, so ask around the office if one of them is around.