Technology Support Center

Unix Systems FAQs

What is BGUnix? What is it used for?
BGUnix is a Sun Enterprise 450 server running the Solaris 8 operating system. It is generally used by students and faculty to run various Unix applications such as compilers, mathematical packages, and simulations.  

What methods or procotols can I use to log into my BGUnix account?
You can use any of the following programs to log into your account: SSH (version 2), SFTP and SCP. Access via X11 is available, but will be restricted to connections tunneled through SSH in the near future for improved security.

  Why can I no longer use telnet or FTP?
The telnet and FTP protocols are no longer supported due to their lack of encryption and other security concerns.

  What applications are recommended for BGUnix connections?
For PC clients, direct connections to BGNix can be made with PuTTY, a free Telnet/SSH client. PuTTY supports SSH version 2. For more information, see the PuTTY Home Page. For X11 (X-windows) connections, Hummingbird Exceed is installed in the Hayes 025 lab.

For Mac OS X clients, use the built-in application called Terminal in the Utilities folder or Apple X11.


What is BGResearch?
BGResearch is available for faculty and staff who wish to use Unix for data analysis and other research purposes. Unlike BGUnix, it is not for instructional use. The two machines are very similar, but BGResearch is optimized for large jobs that take a long time to run. Because the system is designed to support less clients, each user has a larger quota.


Who is eligible for a BGResearch account?
BGResearch is available to faculty and staff who need the server and its programs for research purposes and for executing programs that require long-running execution. Students may also receive accounts if they have a legitimate reason to use the machine. A faculty or staff member will need to sponsor them in order to receive an account.


How do I request an account?
Faculty or staff may request an account on BGResearch by contacting the Technology Support Center. For students, the sponsoring faculty or staff member must contact the Technology Support Center to request an account for them. The account will be created within 1 hour. Once it is created, the user will receive email notification on how to access the account.


How long is my BGResearch account valid?
Once you have received your BGResearch account, you may use it until you leave the university and are no longer affiliated with BGSU. At this time your account will automatically be removed. If you wish to have your BGResearch account removed prior to leaving BGSU, you may contact the Technology Support Center and request that it be deleted.


How do I change my password?
If you know your password and wish to change it, use the "passwd" command. If you have forgotten your password and cannot log in, you will need to contact the Technology Support Center to have them reset it. Your password will be set to your current BGSU e-mail authentication password (your portal and email password) within 1 hour. You will then receive email notification once it has been reset. If you wish to change your password after it has been reset, use the "passwd" command.


What methods or procotols can I use to log into my BGResearch account?
You can use any of the following programs to log into your account: FTP, Telnet, Secure Shell (SSH), Secure FTP (SFTP), or X windows login.


Where can I find general usage information on my BGResearch account?
See Using the Korn (ksh) shell on BGResearch.


What software is installed on BGResearch?
Please refer to for the software inventory of BGResearch.


What if a specific software package is not installed? Can I request it?
If a specific software package you need is not currently available on the system, you can request to have it installed. If the software is found suitable for installation on BGResearch, we can install it during the next break between academic terms. Your request can be made through the Technology Support Center. Please give us as much lead-time as possible when requesting software, to allow us adequate time to prepare. Also, discussions and special provisions will need to be made for any commercial packages that require purchase or special licenses.