Graduate student workstation options

These guidelines cover graduate workstation options in the School of Computer Science. Before the beginning of term, the supervisor/advisor of a new full-time graduate student in the PhD, MMath (thesis option) or MMath (research paper option) program is asked to specify what desktop equipment will be provided on the student's desk.

These are the current options:

  • Option one: thin client

A thin client, along with a monitor, will be provided by the School at no cost to the researcher, either for the equipment or support of the machine. If there is a problem with the equipment, it will be swapped out with a replacement.  Contact the CSCF Help Desk if you need service.

The thin client will provide access to Windows, Unix and Linux servers in the general computing environment as well as the student environment.

  • Option two: School-provided desktop PC

The School can provide a desktop PC that meets or exceeds Computer Science Computing Facility (CSCF) workstation standards. The machine will be configured with dual-boot Windows and Linux. Students will be given administrator privileges (Windows) and root access (Linux) on this machine, so that they can install any additional software they may require. An on-going subscription to research computing support is required. If the faculty supervisor is already part of a group that has a subscription, this machine can be added to it. Otherwise, they can get their own, individual subscription. Please note that machines are selected from a pool of computers that may include older machines that have been returned as well as machines recently purchased. There are no guarantees about which machine a specific student might receive.

Support is provided by one of the Research Support Group staff, who will be assigned as your Point of Contact. You may also request assistance from the CSCF Help Desk if your Point of Contact is not available when you need them.

  • Option three: School-provided laptop PC

Rather than a desktop PC, the faculty supervisor may request a laptop. They will meet or exceed the minimum laptop standards. There are a limited number of these available. Similar to option two, an on-going CSCF research support subscription is required.

Support is provided by one of the Research Support Group staff, who will be assigned as your Point of Contact. You may also request assistance from the CSCF Help Desk if your Point of Contact is not available when you need them.

    • Option four: School-provided Mac (not currently available)

    Rather than a desktop PC or laptop, the faculty supervisor may request a Mac Mini workstation. Similar to option two, an on-going CSCF research support subscription is required.

    • Option five: Advisor-provided desktop

    This option allows for the faculty supervisor or the graduate student to provide their own preferred equipment. A network connection will be provided at no charge. If desired, the machine can be supported through a research support subscription.

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