Introduction to Computing at UF Statistics

Intended audience

The audience for this document is the new graduate student or faculty member in Statistics. It is assumed you have been using Windows or Mac OS X to send email, browse the web, and write papers at this or another University for the last several years, and you want to know what additional software and services the Statistics department and UF have to offer. It is also assumed you do not have hands-on experience with Linux, and you wonder why we use it instead of Windows or Mac OS X.

Central computing groups on campus

For those of you new to UF, I want to mention a few of the other large
central computing groups on campus before I talk about Statistics
resources. Some of these you will be working with daily, and some you
may never directly talk to. All of them are important.

Academic Technology (AT; formerly OIR, CIRCA)

The group whose name was formerly CIRCA (Center for Instructional, Research, and Computing Activities) merged with the group whose name was formerly OIR (Office of Instructional Resources), to form the group named AT (Academic Technology). Currently they run several Windows-based computing labs, the undergraduate computing helpdesk, the Gatorlink helpdesk, the first-level PeopleSoft helpdesk, and a bunch of other things. If you are new to UF you will need to visit them on the 5th floor of the CSE (Computer Science and Engineering) building to receive a Gatorlink identification card. You should do this in your first week. You have already received your Gatorlink account in the process of spplying to UF.

Computing and Network Services (CNS; formerly NERDC)

The group whose name was formerly NERDC (Northeast Regional Data Center) has been renamed CNS (Computing and Network Services). They maintain the network plumbing that brings the Internet to every building, shed, and doghouse on campus, and run Gatorlink mail and dialup. They probe every Windows machine they can find for viruses from time to time, and this includes personal laptops attached by wireless. You may never interact with them directly unless your personal Windows machine contracts a particularly malevolent virus.

Bridges / Peoplesoft (formerly ERP)

The group whose name was formerly ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) and is now named Bridges, runs the ERP software named PeopleSoft on several IBM Unix mainframes. Currently PeopleSoft has replaced the financial functions of general ledger and payroll that were formerly distributed between the CNS mainframe and the State of Florida mainframe. It appears like the registrar function will remain on the IBM CICS mainframe. You will be interacting with PeopleSoft for time reporting for some appointments.

Central computing services on campus

UF Exchange

Forwarding UF Exchange Mail


There is wireless service inside of Griffin-Floyd, and all over campus. The general access ones are all named “uf”, just connect to the one with the highest signal strength. Open a browser and read any web page. You will be redirected to a login screen that accepts your Gatorlink to activate the port. Make sure you know the name of the wireless you’re trying to use. If you’re inside Griffin-Floyd, you may receive the uf wireless from the plaza next door, which has too low of a signal to be reliable, or the Chemistry one named Chemnet, for which you don’t have logins.

Walk-up Internet ports

There are some ethernet ports, mostly in AT lab spaces, that are
available for campus community use. Plug in and open a browser the
same way as wireless.

Personal laptops, viruses, and network connections

In the past, we’ve found that 5 of the 25 laptops newly introduced to the Statistics network in a year were caught breaking into other machines within a week, even after passing an initial virus scan. Therefore, personal laptops may now only be connected via the wireless service, which is better equipped to identify and isolate infections. The McAfee virus scanner is site-licensed to UF for both school and home use. If you receive a paycheck from UF, you are also site licensed to use any version of Windows and any version of MS Office. The McAfee is available through UF Software Licensing Services, and you can purchase media for Windows and Office versions at the bookstore in the Reitz Union.


Your email address is, and that is where official departmental notices will be sent. We don’t mind if you forward your email elsewhere, as long as you read it! All incoming messages are eventually accepted, but messages deemed to be spam are filtered into the folders Spam, Virus, or Banned. You can ignore these folders until you think you may be missing something. We believe we get extremely few false positives on our spam filtering.

Learn more about UF webmail UF mail.

Personal webpage

To request a personal UF webpage, make a request from CLAS IT. You will be given a customizable WordPress site to describe your research interests, courses, and projects, as well as list your CV and biographical information. One problem that comes up occasionally with TAs is that for privacy reasons you must never publish Social Security numbers or UFID numbers on the web. I know it’s convenient to return test results that way, but you must not do it.