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Quick reference for SCS Dragon on Unix/Linux workstations

On this page:

Getting help

If you have a problem with your machine:
  • Check the on-line SCS Facilities documentation at
  • Send mail to
  • If it needs immediate attention, call the SCS Help Desk at x8-4231; M-F, 9-5. The call will forward to SCS Operations during non-business hours.

Logging in

To log in to an SCS Dragon Unix/Linux host, enter your SCS user ID and your SCS Kerberos password. You will need an account on the machine to log in. If you are using a local password (rather than your SCS Kerberos password) you must run kinit after logging in in order to get tickets for authenticating to AFS and other services. If you are using the standard shell profiles provided by SCS Facilities, you will be prompted to obtain AFS and Kerberos credentials if you do not have any after logging in on a text-based console.


SCS Dragon Unix/Linux hosts can receive nightly backups. Hosts must be left running, on the wired network, and booted into Unix/Linux for backups to occur. Most hosts are only put into the backup system if specifically requested. You can run
to check if your host is being backed up. See our Unix/Linux backup documentation for details about our backup system and how to request backups and restores.

Reboots & shutdowns

You can damage your machine and/or lose data if you reboot it without first shutting it down properly (e.g. don't just powercycle it). On Linux hosts, you can logout and then hit ctl-alt-delete to safely reboot your machine. On most modern systems, a quick tap of the power button will also initiate a clean system shutdown. For other OSes, if you do not have root, please contact us so that we can safely reboot it. If you do have root, use the vendor-supplied shutdown program to reboot or halt your machine.

Root & local administration

If you are not experienced and comfortable doing Unix/Linux system administration, please contact us if you need something done on your machine that requires root privileges. It is very easy to inadvertently make a host unusable or destroy data if you are root. If you do need root privileges on your machine, contact us. SCS Dragon hosts are different in a few ways from stock vendor distributions. Please read the SCS Dragon Unix/Linux administration guide before making changes to your machine. Any network-aware software that you install must be kept up-to-date on security patches, and follow our network use policies.