During the math department orientation sessions at the start of each academic year, the computer staff runs a few computing-related sessions. This page outlines the material discussed during the "Introduction to Computing" session.

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Basic help and support resources

Most of the information contained in this introduction can be accessed directly from the math department computer support website. In general, if you have computing-related questions or comments, please contact the computer system staff either by sending an e-mail to system@math.arizona.edu, or by filling out our web feedback form.

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University Resources and Policies




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Department of Mathematics Resources and Policies


Operating system platforms:

  • GNU/Linux
  • Microsoft Windows
  • Apple Mac OS X

Web browsing:


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Computer lab facilities and policies

The math department maintains the following computer facilities. The departmental body responsible for computer related policymaking is the Computer Committee.


To use the services listed above, you must have a network account (a username and a password).
There is information for holders of new accounts.

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Important general safety and security remarks

  • Virus savvy: never open e-mail attachments for which you don't know who the sender is. If you do happen to open an attachment with a virus, immediately notify the computer support staff.
  • To plug a personal equipment (e.g. laptops) into the math department building network, your equipment must be approved and registered or you will not be able to access our printers or intranet.
  • If you need to connect remotely to a network be it the U of A Math Department network or any other network always use the secure (encrypted) - SSH, SCP, SFTP connections. The old TELNET, FTP, RLOGIN protocols are deprecated since they are not secure. Do not use them!
  • Make sure your anti-virus software is always up-to-date.
  • At no cost to you, download and install Sophos anti-virus on your computer (even if it stays at home)!
  • Regularly backup files.
  • Make sure that you periodically change your password.
  • For additional security and network related issues consult the network FAQs.