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Math Department Linux Resources
Computing facilities in the Department of Mathematics primarily utilize the Linux operating system for workstation, server and cluster computing. This page contains resources for new students who are less familiar with the Linux operating system.
For students wishing to try linux locally on their personal computers without performing a full install, we have set up virtual machines (VM) of the standard department Ubuntu Linux installation. Users wishing to use this approach should first download and install the freely-available VirtualBox software on their computer. In addition, users should download one of the two following VMs:
System requirements: The VM is around 6.1 GB in size, uncompressed and with the full stack of software installed. Depending on how much data you store in your VM, this can of course grow larger. You can set how much of your RAM is available to the VM when configuring it, but it is recommended to use at least 512 MB. Since the VM runs within your existing operating system, it is recommended that your computer have at least 1 GB of RAM.
Setting up the VM in VirtualBox: Once you have downloaded and unzipped the VM disk image, follow these steps to set it up in VirtualBox:
Starting the VM: Once you have configured the VM in VirtualBox, boot it by double-clicking on it's name in the list of available VMs. The VM will take a little while to start, and VirtualBox will display explanation messages about keyboard and mouse capturing. Once the VM has finished booting, it will log you in automatically under the username "smumath" and the corresponding password is "peruna" -- these will be necessary for system administration tasks.
On your first login, open a terminal (in the panel at left) and type
./ubuntu_packages.shYou will be prompted to enter your password (peruna). After that, it will display a long list of packages to install -- answer "Y" at the prompt and press return. It will then proceed to download and install the remaining packages to emulate the SMU Math computing environment. Once this installation finishes, the VM should occupy 6.1 GB of disk space.
Shutting down: When you are done using the VM, you can shut it down by clicking the sprocket in the top right of the window. Once the VM has shut down, the enclosing VirtualBox window will close.