Critical News

  • Move to Duo
    You have probably heard that campus is moving to using  the multi-factor authentication system Duo. This makes it much harder for hackers to access your UC Davis accounts. Even if someone has stolen your passphrase, they will still need a “second factor”.

    The System Support Group (SSG) is here to help you move to Duo.  Here is a step by step walkthrough that should help you to move to Duo. 

    Faculty and Staff are supposed to move to Duo by the middle of February. The SSG encourages everyone to move to Duo as soon as possible, because of the protections Duo provides.

    If the walkthrough doesn't work for you, please contact us at
    Posted Jan 24, 2019, 9:57 AM by Ken Gribble
  • Be on the lookout for Phishing Attacks
    There have been a few social engineering attacks via email that have slipped by our spam firewall and Google's security measures. Be on your guard!

    The most common of these phishing attacks com from some trusted entity, such as Campus IT, or from a service used in academia, like Blackboard. The message might say you have a message, or it might say your password is going to expire, anything to get you to click and login with your campus credentials which are then stolen, along with any data associated with that password.

    Don't click on links you are unsure of. Do not re-use passwords for multiple services. Use a two-factor authenticator when available.

    The Systems Support Group (SSG) highly recommends turning on Google's 2-Step Verification to protect your Google account (Davismail). There are a few ways to authenticate using this service, including a very convenient code sent to your phone via text.

    This two-factor authentication is an effective method for countering phishing attacks, as it adds an extra verification layer when logging into sensitive applications. It's a good idea to apply two-factor authentication on a service when you can.

    Posted Nov 14, 2017, 2:46 PM by Ken Gribble
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The CSIF has new home directories

posted Sep 17, 2018, 10:50 AM by Ken Gribble   [ updated Sep 27, 2018, 11:36 AM by Jim Moersfelder ]

The Computer Science Instructional Facility has a new set of home directories in the CSIF and old home directories have been archived. 
The old home directories are still mounted on as read-only.  Please, only use sp2 to retrieve or backup your files from the old home directory.

If you want to move your files from the old home directory to your new home directory we suggest logging into a system in the CSIF, for example and executing one of these 3 rsync commands below:

** WARNING ** 
If you have created a file on the new home directory that is named the same and in the same location as the file on the old home directory and you rsync that directory to the same place, it will over write the file on the new home directory.    
** WARNING ** 

In the below commands, change "USERNAME" to your username in the CSIF.

If you want to copy a directory from your old home directory called "OLD_DIRECTORY" to your new directory use this command:

If you want to copy your entire old home directory to your new home directory use the following command:
rsync -avhHSe ssh USERNAME@sp2:/home/USERNAME/ /home/USERNAME/

If you want to copy your entire old home directory to a directory called "OldHome" in your new home directory use this command:
rsync -avhHSe ssh USERNAME@sp2:/home/USERNAME/ /home/USERNAME/OldHome/

Remember the "/" is important, often without it, rsync puts files in different locations.  

If you have any questions or need help please email

CS New Faculty Department Orientation SSG Presentation

posted Nov 14, 2017, 2:43 PM by Ken Gribble   [ updated Nov 14, 2017, 2:44 PM ]

SSG Graduate Student Presentation 2017

posted Sep 26, 2017, 2:07 PM by Ken Gribble   [ updated Sep 26, 2017, 2:08 PM ]

Thanks to everyone for being there!

Google Docs phishing attack

posted May 3, 2017, 3:17 PM by Ken Gribble   [ updated Nov 9, 2017, 8:27 AM ]

Please be on the lookout for a Google Docs phishing email. The email invites you to collaborate in a Google Doc with the click of a link.

"When you click the link, you go to Google’s real login page. The problem is that after you’ve entered your password there, you’re redirected to a malicious third-party site. (In my case, it would have been “,” which is not a Google site.) This page asks you to grant it permission to access your email account.

If users don’t realize they’ve been redirected to a non-Google site, they inadvertently give hackers the ability to read their emails and send out emails on their behalf. Malicious software then accesses a user’s address book and sends out more phishing emails to all the victims, repeating the cycle."

Including this part of the article:

What to do if you fall prey to the attack

Hopefully you read this article before you fell prey to the Google Docs phishing scam. But what should you do if you’re coming to this article after you’ve already clicked the link and granted permission to the malicious software?

It never hurts to change your password, but experts say that won’t help in this case. Rather, what you need to do is revoke the permissions you unknowingly gave the malicious app to your account. To do that, go to the Google app permission page and look for the app called “Google Docs” — it’s not the real Google Docs. Click on that app and then click “Remove.”

2017 Asset Management in Computer Science

posted Jan 23, 2017, 3:58 PM by Ken Gribble   [ updated May 3, 2017, 3:18 PM ]

In the early months of 2017 the Systems Support Group (SSG) will collect information on all CS assets. This includes all devices purchased by CS that can connect to a network. 

For all systems running the Windows or Mac OS, the SSG would like to install BigFix software. BigFix will deliver information regularly and accurately to our Asset Management Software.

If you have a Linux system or do not want us to install BigFix then we will collect the following information manually:

  • Serial Numbers
  • PI or Owner Name
  • PI or Owner Phone Number
  • PI or Owner Email
  • MAC Address
  • OS
  • NAM
  • Room number
  • Where your work data is stored
  • Backup Solution used

We will be using student staff to collect this information -- they will be contacting you soon to coordinate a meeting to discuss installing BigFix and tracking all CS assets you or your team is using.

If you have any questions or comments please email

Thank you in advance for your assistance.

For more information about BigFix:
Official hallway announcement: 
Official email announcement:

LaTeX in Google Docs

posted Apr 25, 2016, 11:37 AM by Ken Gribble

Did you know that Google Docs can do high-quality LaTeX rendered images? 

This page will explain how to get started in adding LaTeX rendered images into your Google Docs:

SSG Graduate Student Presentation 2015

posted Sep 21, 2015, 4:58 PM by Ken Gribble

Campus and CS Wireless Service Changes

posted Jun 5, 2015, 9:41 AM by Ken Gribble   [ updated Jun 5, 2015, 12:00 PM ]

Because MoobilenetX will be depreciated in the near future, the Computer Science department now advises eduroam* for wireless needs. Choose your OS from the Campus Wireless Access page, and then use the eduroam instructions.

The wireless networks on campus support most wireless devices (802.11 a/b/g/n) and are available to all UC Davis computing account holdersUC Davis Guests, sponsored guests, and Eduroam account holders.


eduroam (education roaming) is the secure, world-wide roaming access service developed for the international research and education community.

Having started in Europe, eduroam has gained momentum throughout the research and education community and is now available in 74 territories.

eduroam allows students, researchers and staff from participating institutions to obtain Internet connectivity across campus and when visiting other participating institutions by simply opening their laptop.

SSG Graduate Student Presentation 2014

posted Sep 29, 2014, 1:51 PM by Ken Gribble   [ updated Sep 29, 2014, 2:01 PM ]

Thanks to everyone who listened!

Appointment Slots in Google Calendar

posted Sep 16, 2014, 11:43 AM by Ken Gribble

Did you know you can make appointment slots in Google Calendar? 

The appointment slots feature lets you set one period of time on your calendar, divided into available time slots for people to reserve. For instance, professors or staff can have their students reserve time during office hours each week. These appointment calendars can also be shared on the web.

Here's a video that explains how to create and reserve appointment slots.

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