U of M Computer Tools: 2 Tips

I really feel badly about not being able to blog more, thanks to work and homework and cooking and whatnot. But Since I have determined that I won’t get an AE540 problem done before my bedtime, I’ll make a quick post about two little things I’ve stumbled upon.


The first is an SFTP program called Fugu. For Mac users who want a GUI-based way to access remote files, here it is (scroll to bottom). If you’re coding on your own machine and you need to upload to the CAEN linux server to compile it, this is friendlier way to quickly chuck your code to your remote directory. It won’t completely eliminate your dependence on command line, but it’s a nice way to visualize your files. Oh, and for those of you in AE 450, the OS X equivalent of PuTTY is called X11, if it’s not already installed, you can install it from your OS X installation DVD. It’s a developer tool, I believe.

CTools Failed Downloads

The second relates to the first tip. I’ve encountered several instances where large file transfers (like Bernstein’s PDF notes) simply won’t download to my computer from CTools. I’m not sure if it’s Northwood V internet or something, but the transfer won’t ever make it past 60% if I’m lucky, 10% if it really sucks. The way around it is to download the file to your private directory via an on-campus computer. Yes, if you’re on campus, you can just flash-drive it from a lab computer, but if you’re trying to do this on a Sunday night, taking the bus out is not an appealing option. Make use of UM’s remote computing sites to download whatever you need to your IFS (private directory) drive, then you can just use a program like Fugu/WinSCP to download it. Or, you know, Command-Line-Kung-Fu it. The SFTP/SSH connections seem to be a lot more reliable than the HTTP transfer from CTools directly.

Update: It just struck me that you could also just email it… never occurred to me because if you’d tried to do that on TCNJ internet, it would be no faster (not to mention TCNJ Email used to not support uploads bigger than 10 megs).

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