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The ADN Connection, April/May/June 1998 The A3C Connection
April/May/June '98 Contents A Time of Opportunity, a Time to Move On (from CMS) Keeping Secure on the Web Web Security for Files and Data The ADN Post ADN Free Summer Seminars Cookies on the Web
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A Time of Opportunity, a Time to Move On (from CMS)


[Note: CMS is now long gone. -- Ed.]

The ADN Post CMS Everyone 
Nothing Lasts Forever
  If you're one of those people who are at ease with CMS and comfortable with its idiosyncrasies and who have no envy of your neighbor's PC, there's no easy way to tell you. We plan to remove all individual accounts and user services from UICVM CMS by December 31, 1999.

Nothing lasts forever. With computers, nothing even comes close. CMS has been a good friend to UIC for quite some time, extremely useful to many thousands of people. But high maintenance costs, plus the rise in the use of graphical interfaces, network computing, and personal computer software packages, forces us to make choices. In order to preserve a high level of support for the UIC community as a whole, we need to focus our efforts on desktop machines, UNIX servers, instructional technology, and the ADN network. These are all areas where CMS is not the machine of choice.

We hope that those of you who are still using CMS will view this as an opportunity to improve your computing life, a time to take stock of your work methods and find easier ways to do things. We'll try to make your transition as convenient and painless as we can, but there's no way around the fact that you'll have to make some choices and changes. You don't have to rush, but now is the time to start planning.

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What's Our Plan?
  First, starting with fall semester 1998, we won't issue any new CMS accounts; anyone opening a new account will open it on icarus or tigger. There is definitely no point in starting new people out on the wrong foot.

Second, we will begin to phase out services on CMS. The first service to go will the CMS POP server; our plan is to turn it off by the end of this year (December 31, 1998). This ought to be fairly easy, because POP users shouldn't really care where their mailbox is, as long as they can read their mail in Eudora. The POP server on CMS is old and cranky and can't be used with the Eudora option that allows you to read your mail from multiple PCs. We'd like to move the CMS POP users directly to the new mail-only machines which we'll be building this summer.

The second service to go will be the CMS TACACS servers. Starting with spring semester 1999, you will no longer be able to use your CMS userid and password for the ADN dialup lines, UIC Bluestem authentication, or to login in the ADN public labs. So make sure you have a tigger or icarus account by then! Other targeted services will be announced later, when we have specific dates.

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What Should You Do Now?
  Well, that depends on what you are doing now. Take stock of how you use CMS and find alternatives. We will help, of course, but we won't be able to do everything for you. We'll be putting most of our efforts into finding general solutions for common problems, rather than highly specialized solutions for unique problems.

We already have some idea of what you probably need, but if you have anything unusual, please let us know.

Mail, Part 1.
If you don't have a netid, get one now. Use for your return address, and get your LISTSERV subscriptions converted to this new address. You can still use your current mail system on CMS for a while, but converting your address now will save a lot of pain later. When CMS is gone, you won't be able to use style addresses, so don't delay on this one. (For step-by-step instructions, see the ADN Connection article referred to in Mail, Part 2, and, in particular step 8 Resubscribe to listserv/majordomo discussion lists.)
Mail, Part 2.
If you currently use note or mail to read your mail, consider a switch to Eudora and POP. This will make later changes much easier for you. To help you make this transition, there's a new ADN seminar (see ADN Free Summer Seminars) and the  ADN Connection article How do I migrate away from CMS mail? (to Eudora or Pine), January/February 1997.
Word Processing.
If you're still using Waterloo GML or SCRIPT on CMS, you'll need a new word processing system. Consider a personal computer word processing package such as WordPerfect or Microsoft Word. If you really like tagging your text explicitly, you could use Tec; it's on tigger, icarus, and the ADN public personal computers.
If you have a lot of existing SCRIPT files, figure out what you need them for. You can obviously move the files to other machines and read them there, but you won't have SCRIPT to produce output from them. If you've kept the files around "just because," you can continue to do so. But if you really do routinely use SCRIPT to process files that haven't changed for a while, you will need to develop a new system.
Text editing.
You might just use your personal computer word processor. But there's an alternative on the ADN UNIX machines that is worth mentioning -- the (the Hessling editor) is an XEDIT work-alike. Not identical, mind you, but close enough to make CMS users feel like they haven't wandered too far.
You probably know you can't just move SAS datasets. You must use SAS to convert them to a transportable format first. If you have a lot of files you need to keep, you should get busy on this one. And while you're at it, check to see if you have any dates recorded in 2-digit format. Might be a good time to fix your own personal Y2K (year 2000) problem. :-) (For brief instructions on how to create SAS and SPSS export files, see Sending SPSS and SAS System Files Over the Internet, by Panu Sittiwong, at the University of North Texas.)
General computation, including SAS.
Consider borg, our HP/Convex computational machine. Borg is due to be upgraded this summer, with about a fourfold improvement in processor speed. And the online graphical capabilities of X Windows makes a UNIX computational engine very comfortable to use once you learn the new ropes.
File Sharing.
Consider using the Web. There are other choices too, depending on the nature of the files and who needs to access them: shared disk space on our Novell Server Services servers, for example, or a UNIX group on tigger.
Consider moving to a personal computer database system like Access or Paradox. Or perhaps Lotus Notes, which has significant advantages for publishing databases on the Web.
We're installing a software package on our UNIX machines that allows users to mount and use tapes. It will even mount old CMS tapes, although CMS binary files won't make any sense to UNIX machines. (If you have any tapes in CMS format, you should copy them to a more standard format, such as unlabeled or IBM standard label.) Consider writable CD-ROMs or JAZ drives for storage of large files if all you need is an archive service.
ADN seminars.
We have free seminars on many topics, including dealing with PCs and UNIX systems. Learning about your new systems will make your life easier and will make us a lot happier. (See ADN Free Summer Seminars and the Seminars Web page:
And so on...

There are other concerns, some we've already thought of (files in the CMS or MVS archives, for example) and some, no doubt, that we haven't. We've brought together a group of people to help us anticipate transition issues and to suggest solutions for them. You can email them at

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No Need to Panic
  There is enough lead time if you make use of it. And trust me, there is quite a bit of work for us, behind the scenes, to make this all work smoothly. While you can count on us for help, don't assume we'll be able to give you lots of individual attention at the last minute. Look for further announcements, and we'll have more details on conversion suggestions in later editions of the ADN Connection. Truth be told, CMS usage has been dropping for several years. There are many former CMS users walking around campus, and most of them are smiling. Soon, we'll all be former CMS users, and you can be smiling, too. Comments are welcome; please send them to:
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