Support for the Campus Software Library

The University makes a library of research software available to the entire campus community without charge. However, the statistical software in the library is already available on Winstat. Therefore:

SSCC staff will not install or troubleshoot installation problems on the individual computers of students (university or personally owned) for any software from the Campus Software Library that is readily available on Winstat.

The software in the campus library is "free" in the sense of "free puppy:" you don't have to pay money for it, but you will have to spend time taking care of it. The installation process for SAS in particular is time-consuming and really intended for IT professionals. SSCC's PC Support group does not have the resources to install or assist in the installation of library software on the individual computers of even a significant fraction of SSCC members.

We also feel strongly that Winstat is a better research platform than individual PCs for most SSCC members. Because researchers’ individual computers are primarily used as a client for logging into the servers, they get high-performance hardware without having to pay for high performance computers or frequent upgrades. If one client computer fails, they can switch to another without any loss of productivity. If a server fails, researchers can simply log in again and be automatically directed to another server in the cluster. Data loss and data breach incidents are minimized because data are almost automatically stored on network drives.

SSCC supports the campus software library: it has saved us a small but significant amount of money, and it is a tremendous benefit to researchers who don't have access to resources like Winstat. However, we urge researchers who do have access to Winstat to take full advantage of it.