Remote Access

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If you have ever tried to build anything, you know that it is next to impossible without using the right tools. When you are using a computer, it is no different--you need the right program for the file you are using. When you try to work on a file but do not use the specified program, functionality, and often times usability, is sacrificed.

But what happens you do not have the right program on your computer, but we here at NC State do? Well, simply put, you connect to our servers here Remote Access. When you remotely access a computer, you are inputting data into a computer other than the one you are physically sitting at. The other computer may be a friend's computer five feet away, or it may be an NC State server computer miles away.

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Remote Access Servers

The process by which you connect to the school's server is different depending upon your operating system. The basic steps are listed below, but a more complete guide can be obtained via the Remote Access webpage. The following is a list of servers that ECE and CPE majors have access to in order to run crucial applications from home computers. is a farm of four large Sun servers. is a Red Hat Linux server with 4 GB of memory and two hyperthreaded Pentium 4 2.8 GHz processors.

Alternatively, you can connect via SSH to either or for access to Sun and Linux applications, respectively.

Connecting from Sun/Linux

Connecting from a Solaris or Linux box is not a very complicated procedure. You should first ensure that you have SSH installed on your computer by typing ssh into a terminal. If you get an error telling you file or command not found, refer to your user documentation on how to install SSH. To connect to the remote access servers here run the SSH command in your terminal. For instance, to connect to, in your terminal window simply type:


If you are having problems running programs which require an XFree86 server, try connecting using the '-X' flag along with the SSH command.

Connecting from Windows

Due to major design differences in operating systems, Windows users do not have native support for the technologies used to remotely access these servers. Programs like WinSCP, PuTTY, F-Secure, WolfCall, OpenAFS, and X-Win32 are required for usage of the servers. These programs can be found at the Remote Access for Windows web page. Follow the instructions for each package. Please be sure that your machine is fully patched and has current AntiVirus software installed before connecting to NC State servers.



Connecting from Mac OS X

With Mac OS X, there is very little that a user has to do in order to gain full access to the remote access servers. The user will need to download and install XFree86 for Mac OS X. Once this is done, start XFree86 and through a terminal window in XFree86, type

  ssh -x hostname

This allows you to run programs requiring XFree86 on your system.