Software Installs

If you need specific packages installed on a CS machine, you can simply email us at requesting it to be installed. Typically we accept all requests, unless there is no way to deploy the software without affecting other users.

That being said, you should first check that the software you need is not already installed. If you know the name of the binary, you can try the witch command.

$ which eclipse
> /var/bin/eclipse

You will notice that we install a lot of non-standard packages under /usr/local/pkgs with symlinks in /var/bin.

Distributed OS

The softwares available on most of our machines actually comes from a central server. Each machine sync their local cache with the server every night at 1:00 AM. If you just requested a software install, or, for any reason, you want to force a workstation to resync with the server, you can do so with the following command:

$ sudo sync-cache

Do not worry about the sudo, it won't ask you for a password on machines where this feature is supported (if it does ask for a password, the machine does not need to sync with the central server). However, note that a full sync can take more than 15 minutes and should not be interrupted.

Educational Licenses

Students enrolled in the School of Computer Science are entitled to educational licenses for the following family of products:

  • Microsoft Imagine Premium
  • VMWare

Simply visit the On The Hub website and register with your email and a password that does not need to be your McGill password (and probably shouldn't be).