ISUN service, now a campus relic, will end in early 2009

The service dates to the age of prohibitively expensive computers, and was valuable for years. But the campus ISUN interactive Unix service now costs far more than it's worth, and will be retired Feb. 25, 2009.

Unix is a widely used computer operating system. The campus started offering the ISUN service in the 1970s, when departments could not afford computers for everyone who needed one. The service let people without computers, or without easy access to the Internet, have a free, common place where they could work and use certain computer tools (compilers, editors, email packages, and so on).

As computers spread, the service remained useful because it offered access to commercial software packages such as Mathematica and GCG. But during the 1990s, these packages moved to desktop computing platforms, or else their license agreements with the University of California ended.

Anyone with a campus computing account could use the ISUN service. Today only about 100 do, thanks to the proliferation of computers and Internet availability, among other changes. Shutting the service saves maintenance expense and improves online campus security.

Information and Educational Technology is contacting the remaining ISUN account holders to ask them to move any files they may need from their ISUN account to their desktop or to MySpace, the file storage component of New articles in the Xbase campus technological knowledge resource offer advice, and the main article links to all of the relevant instructions.

Please direct any questions to the IT Express Computing Services Help Desk at (530) 754-HELP (4357).