New User FAQ — RCG Handbook

New User FAQ

How do I get an SFU account?

If you are visitor, talk to your faculty member about obtaining a sponsored account.

Students should use their SFU computing ID and password to log in to research network hosts.

I have an account but can’t log in.

Your school or department needs to add you to the appropriate access control list before you can log in to research network hosts.

Please contact your school’s front office staff about being added to one of these access control lists:

Computing Science Engineering Science
cmpt-grad ensc-faculty
cmpt-phd-msc grad-ensc
cmpt-sessional ensc-rcg-courses
cs-faculty ensc-researchers
cs-grads ensc-staff
cs-postdocs mse-grads

Please note it can take up to 30 minutes before access control list changes take effect.

When will my access to the research network expire?

If your SFU computing account is active, your access to the research network will remain active.

For more information about when your SFU account expires, see the IT Services FAQ item “Do I get to keep my SFU Computing ID after I leave the University?

Sponsored accounts need to be renewed once a year. A reminder will be e-mailed to the user of the account approximately three weeks before the account expires.

What will happen to my files when my account expires?

Files in your research network home directory will remain in place for one year after your account expires. However, when your SFU account expires, you will lose access to these files.

The same applies to your shared lab NFS space, except that files in this space (e.g., /cs/nll-research, /cs/vml3, …) may be deleted by your faculty member or other lab members as they see fit. As above, you will lose access to these files when your SFU account expires.

Can I keep my account?

Before your SFU computing account expires, you may request that it be converted into a sponsored account. Please talk to your faculty member as there is a yearly fee involved.

After your account expires, your home directory contents will no longer be accessible, and your e-mail will become inaccessible after one year.

Lab Wikis

Ask your supervisor or lab administrator to add you to the access control list for your lab’s wiki, then wait 24 hours. Wiki access control lists are only synchronized once a day.

If you’ve been added to the appropriate list, waited 24 hours, and still don’t have access to your lab wiki, contact for assistance.


Not all labs make use of SFU’s wiki service. If you would like to start a wiki to help organize your lab’s activities, contact the SFU wiki administrator (