Swarthmore College Department of Computer Science

the cs user agreement

The purpose of the Computer Science Departments' computing equipment is to further computer science study and research at Swarthmore College by providing access to data and equipment not otherwise available to individuals. We want you to use it in good faith. This document gives some examples of acceptable and unacceptable use. It is not meant to be exhaustive.

  • You, the user, must:
    • Respect the rights and privacy of other users: access only files and data that are your own, are publicly available, or to which you have been given authorized access.
    • Be considerate in your use of shared resources: make economic use of CPU time, network bandwidth, disk space, printer paper, or other resources.
    • Take reasonable steps to protect your account, including not sharing your password or account with another person.
  • You, the user, must not:
    • Use another person's user id, password, files, or data without express permission from them.
    • Use software in unauthorized attempts to decode passwords or other encrypted data.
    • Attempt to circumvent or subvert system or network security measures.
    • Engage in any activity that might be harmful to systems, or to any information stored within them, such as creating or propagating viruses, disrupting services, or damaging files.
    • Make or use illegal copies of copyrighted software, store such copies on Computer Science systems, or transmit them over Computer Science networks.
    • Use mail or messaging services to intentionally harass, intimidate, or otherwise annoy another person.
    • Waste computing resources -- for example, by intentionally placing a program in an endless loop, by printing excessive amounts of data or paper, or using the printer for non-CS use.
    • Engage in any other activity that does not comply with the principles presented above or the general rules of the College.
  • We, the faculty in this department and system administrators of this system, will:
    • Make a reasonable effort to provide consistent access to the resources of the Computer Science Department.
    • Not interfere with use of the system except in emergency situations or unless announced in advance.
    • Not violate the privacy of a user's files or transmissions except in emergency situations, including but not limited to suspected break-ins, suspected security violations, suspected viruses, or illegal activity. In the case of activity of those kinds, efforts will be made to notify the college administration before taking any action. It is understood that in an emergency situation, the system administrators may need to take immediate action.
    • Abide by the user rules given above, but reserve the right to copy and/or examine files that are suspected of being related to unacceptable use of the system, including but not limited to suspected break-ins, suspected security violations, suspected viruses, illegal activity, and cases of suspected academic misconduct, in order to maintain the security and usability of the system for all.

The faculty and students managing this system are NOT professional system administrators. Among other things this implies 1) there may be interruptions in availability of the system, and 2) accounts may not be as secure as those on a more professionally managed system.

Please note that email and other files are not guaranteed by the computer science department to be private -- please observe precautions when using this service, especially when using it in conjunction with the Internet.

Note also that the sysadmins reserve the right to cooperate with other sysadmins by providing necessary data when the CS machines are suspected of causing or being a recipient of unacceptable activity.

Misuse of this system and its services may result in loss of computing privileges, demands for financial restitution, and/or disciplinary action depending on the severity of the offense.

If you have any questions about the acceptable use of the systems, please ask a system administrator or professor first before doing anything.

Name: ____________________________________________


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