NCEAS Desktop and Tech Support

Contact: Thomas Hetmank (Room 314)

Need a quick answer?
The NCEAS computer staff actively maintains an online Solutions Center with information on a wide variety of NCEAS computing and technical topics, including answers to frequently asked questions. To get pointers on topics relevant to you, check out the relevant link
* Visitors’ Help Portal
* Resident’s Help Portal

NCEAS’ computing support staff is always available to help you with technical use of our facilities. Our goal is to provide you with easy access to computing services and help remove technical barriers to your research activities at the Center. Please note, in order to keep the NCEAS owned computers running smoothly and to make sure we stay compliant with our software licenses we automatically scan our computers for updates to the Operating System and its applications. We periodically log in locally or remotely under an administrator account to install the updates and conduct general maintenance work.

To discover more about NCEAS computing resources or to get started on setting up any of these services, contact a member of our staff or refer to the resources listed in the ‘'’Need a quick answer?’’’ box on this page. Some of the most frequently requested, commonly used services are described below:

Internet and local network access

Wireless Internet access is available throughout NCEAS’ premises. Access instructions are posted in the conference room and here. For faster access and for individuals with older laptops, we provide wired Ethernet connections in our Common Access Rooms, our Lounge, and all offices. In addition, our conference room provides cables at each seating station, which can be attached directly to your Ethernet network card. To connect your laptop to the Internet you should set it up to use DHCP services (obtaining an IP address automatically) in order to get assigned a proper name and number to operate on our network.

Shared printing

Networked printing is available for visitors and residents, although we encourage users to minimize unnecessary paper use. High-speed black-and-white laser printers are located in the Common Access rooms, and a color laser printer is located in room 331. Details about our printers and instructions on connecting to them are available on the NCEAS Printers page.

Common computers and laptop loans

Located in our Vislab (Room 331) are several shared computers that are hooked up to the Internet and available for your use. These Windows, Macintosh and Linux machines feature a broad array of Internet, Office, Graphics, and Scientific/Analytical application software. If you cannot locate the package that you need, please ask one of the computing support staff for assistance. We also have available a limited number of laptops (Windows/Mac/Linux) that can be loaned out for computing during a meeting.

In addition, accounts are available on our Unix systems for demanding scientific analyses and modeling needs. Contact Nick or Mark for assistance on Unix account creation, and availability of software on these systems.

Digital Library Services

Computers networked at NCEAS are inside the domain, and can thereby access the California Digital Library. See details at and

Special note for visitors

If you are bringing your own laptop system for connecting to our network, particularly if it is running Windows software, please be aware that it is highly vulnerable to viruses and intrusion attempts due to UCSB’s open network. We recommend taking the following precautions before connecting to our network:

Before hooking up to our network, we strongly recommend that you contact one of the above computing support staff, and ask them to test and patch your machine for security problems. It is much easier for us to fix these before you get onto the network rather than afterwards. If your machine is infected, its network access will be disabled until the security problem is corrected.