FAQ

General Information

  1. How do I get a database set up for teaching or research purposes?
  2. How do I get a research web page set up?
  3. How do I get storage for my research data? 
  4. How do I get Linux installed
  5. What software can I access for free?
  6. How do I get a virtual server set up?
  7. How do I remove a hard coded DNS domain on a Linux DHCP system?
  8. How do I access my data from another computer?

1. How do I get a database set up for research or teaching purposes?

ARCS can arrange for a database to be created and stored for you for teaching or research purposes.

Teaching

There is a MYSQL database hosting server called teachdb.newcastle.edu.au on which you can have a database created or have a number of database created for students for teaching purposes.

The lecturer can contact the 17triplezero IT Service Desk to request this service. Ensure you ask to 'log the job to ARCS'.

Research

IT Services can host MSSQL and Oracle databases on behalf of researchers. Please contact the 17triplezero IT Service Desk with the details of your request.

ARCS also has a MYSQL database server for research purposes on resdb.newcastle.edu.au. Please contact the17triplezero IT Service Desk to request this service. Ensure you ask to 'log the job to ARCS'.

Australian Research Collaboration Services

The national body called Australian Research Collaboration Services (ARCS) also provides database services.

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2. How do I get a research web page set up

To get a research web page set up:

  1. Contact Web Services to discuss your web page needs. They can also talk to you about web site design and University web design policy. If the Web Services team cannot meet your requirements then they will direct you to ARCS.
  2. Install your web pages into your U: drive if you are an individual researcher or your S: or R: drive. If you do not have either, contact 17triplezero IT Service Desk to organise one.
  3. Log a job through 17triplezero IT Service Desk marked 'for ARCS team'. We will organise to host you web pages through the web server resweb.newcastle.edu.au

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3. How do I get storage for my research data?

There are a number of ways you can obtain storage to hold data that you are generating through your research activities.

  1. Apply for Research Storage by submitting an online request. If your application is successful, you will be provided with a storage share similar to your U: drive but big enough hold your research data.
  2. Contact the Australian Research Collaboration Services (ARCS). This national body can provide a number of data services including storage on the data fabric, database services and data transfer services.
  3. If you do not have access to an S: drive available through your school or discipline, access can be requested by completing a Request access to existing Shared/Network drive form (PDF 1 MB). The Head of School will need to approve this.
  4. You can purchase your own NAS device. This last choice is IT Services' least preferred option as your data may not be best protected on such a device.

Options 1, 2 and 3 all provide the below capabilities and advantages.

  • RAID capability - A NAS device will need to provide RAID capability at least to mirror level to protect from a disk failing.
  • Shadowcopy/Snapshot - The NAS device should provide shadowcopy and/or snapshot services so that changed files that are deleted can be restored by the user.
  • Tape Backup - You will also need to provide backup to tape of your data. The tape has to then be stored offsite to minimise the risk of fire destroying your NAS and the data stored there.
  • Uninterrupted power supply (UPS) - This stops your hardware from being damaged by power surges and outages.

Please refer to the University of Newcastle's Resposible Conduct of Research policy for more information.

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4. How do I get Linux installed?

ARCS provides access to Red Hat Linux under an unlimited site licence to staff and students of the University of Newcastle. The University hosts a satellite server from which you can download your security updates.

If you want to install Linux onto your server or desktop computer then we can provide the latest version of Red Hat and we can install this for you or you can install if you prefer.

If you have a laptop computer we recommend you use the latest version of Ubuntu as it handles laptop drivers better than Red Hat.

ARCS has the most experience in supporting Red Hat and Ubuntu. You are welcome to install any flavour of Linux you prefer, but our ability to support you will be limited.

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5. What software can I access for free?

There are a number of software packages available to all staff and students of the University.

  • Windows Office Products
    • All MOE computers are supplied with the Microsoft Office package.
    • Microsoft Visio and Project can also be installed by contacting the 17triplezero IT Service Desk.
  • JMP - The University has a site licence for this statistical package.
  • Mathematica - The University has a site licence for this scientific, engineering and mathematical computing environment.
  • Microsoft Visual Studio - The University has a site licence for this Integrated Development Environment (IDE).
  • Matlab - The University has a site licence for this numerical computing environment.
  • Minitab - The University has a site licence for this statistical package.
  • Nvivo -  The University has a site licence for this Qualitative Data Analysis system.
  • MSDNAA- Certain faculties of the University have free access to a limited number of MIcrosoft products through the Microsoft Development Network Academic Alliance license (MSDNAA). 
  • SAS, SAS Mobile - The University has a site licence for this statistical package.
  • SPSS - The University has a site licence for this statistical package.
  • VMWare - Certain Faculties and Schools of the University have free access to a limited number of VMware products through  the VMWare Academic Program (VMAP).

Operating Environments

  • Red Hat - The latest version of Red Hat linux is available for free via the CAUDIT Red Hat License Agreement.
  • Windows Server - A site licence for Windows Server has been purchased by the University.

Please contact the 17triplezero IT Service Desk to check availability for the above systems.

Limited Licences

Download the list of software products that UoN also has limited licences on - Software Support information for ARCS software (XLS 44 KB).

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6. How do I get a virtual server set up?

A virtual server is like any other server except that it runs in a virtual environment rather than directly on a physical computer. There are two main virtual environment products used by IT Services - VMWare and MS Hyper V. These are installed onto a physical server as the host and a portion of the CPU, RAM and HDD is made available to each guest OS installed into it. The virtual environment makes it much easier for IT Services to create, grow and decommission servers without having to manage a physical server for each guest.

Short term projects

In certain circumstances researchers may want a server to carry out a specific task for a specific amount of time, for example 6 months or a year. Instead of purchasing or leasing this hardware, the researcher can ask for a *free* virtual server for a specific, limited time on ARCS infrastructure.

ARCS has a physical server called vbox.newcastle.edu.au that has 64GB RAM, 12 CPUs and a modest amount of HDD space. This sever can host a virtual server of whatever operating system you require, 32 or 64bit, as long as it runs in the x86 environment.

This service is a first come first serve basis so if VBOX is full, you'll need to wait until one of the existing virtual servers completes its run.

Long term teaching or research requirements

ARCS can negotiate for a Virtual Server to be created on a permanent basis in the IT Services VMware ESX or MS Hyper V environments on your behalf.

In both cases the application you require to run will need to be compatible with virtual environments.

Please contact the 17triplezero IT Service Desk to log your request.

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7. How do I remove a hard coded DNS domain on a Linux DHCP system?

Download the document 'Removing a hard coded DNS domain on a Linux system that uses DHCP' (PDF 96 KB) for more information.

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8. How do I access my data from another computer?

The following PDF documents will help you to access your research data from another computer. If you require further assistance,please contact the 17triplezero IT Service Desk.

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