Setting Up Your Web Space

Setting up your Computing Science webpage

When you receive your Computing Science ID (CSID)  web space is automatically allocated for you. Once it is set up, your site can be accessed at<CSID>.

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Accessing webdocs from CS Linux Command Line

Connect to a departmental machine (e.g., innisfree) and your web documents will be available via NFS in the path /compsci/webdocs/<CSID>

  • There's a logs directory that contains read-only web logs (/compsci/webdocs/<CSID>/logs/), and
  • a web_docs directory (/compsci/webdocs/<CSID>/web_docs/), that contains web files such as html files.

This is ONLY available for TST supported and maintained Linux workstations and servers.

When creating files via NFS, you will need to set permissions properly. The following requires some web server and Linux knowledge. You need to do this if, in your browser, you get a 403 error due to permission problems.

  • A setgid bit on your webdocs directory along with a group of apache is used.
    • apache is the web server's group.
  • To maintain the apache group, you will need to use umask. You cannot directly change the group to apache.
    • The default umask is likely 0077 (group and other permissions will be unset)
    • Change it to 0027 before creating directories or files (group write permissions will be unset, as will other permissions)
  • For security reasons, once you're done modifying webdocs files, it's best to revert to a more restrictive umask, such as 0077.
  • Note anything you publish this way is potentially world readable.  To make things more secure, see Password protection below.
  • Other approaches can be taken.  For futher information, please contact the CS Helpdesk.  You will be directed to a TST staff member who can explain this further.

Or, for non-TST maintained Linux machines, you can mount your web documents through a service called SAMBA

  1. Go to your terminal and type:
    smbclient -U <csid> \\\\\\webdocs -D <CSID>\\web_docs
    Note: you will need to enter your CSID password
  2. Then to see what files you have type: ls
    Note: the interface to smbclient is similar to that of ftp. Type "help" to get a complete list of available commands.
  3. Type: get <filename>
    Note: this will place the file in your local working directory.
  4. Edit this file in another window using your favourite editor.
  5. Once finished editing the file, go back to smbclient window and type: put <filename>
    Note: this copies the specified file from your working directory to webdocs-smb
  6. Exit from smbclient


To check if your webdocs have been updated you can go to:<CSID>/

webdocs-smb can only be connected to by machines within the Department's undergraduate and research networks. To access webdocs-smb remotely you will need to setup and use a VPN tunnel.

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Accessing your webdocs directory from a Mac

  1. Open the Finder and press Command+K
  2. For server address type:
  3. You will be prompted for your user name and password.
  4. Edit files on the connected share as you please.

Accessing your webdocs directory from Windows 

  1. From the Start Menu select Computer
  2. In the URL bar that comes up in the Explorer window delete anything in that window and then type:
  3. Press Enter on your keyboard
  4. You should be prompted to enter your username and password
    Username: UOFADOCS\<csid>
    Password: <your_csid_password>
    Note: You can choose to have your CSID password remembered at this point. This will make reconnecting easier for you but do this at your discretion.
  5. Once webdocs is mounted, left-click on the webdocs directory and send it to the desktop to create a short-cut to this mounted filesystem on your desktop
  6. You should now be able to use your web_docs directory like any other filesystem on your computer.

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Password protection

You can create password protected directories on the webdocs system using .htaccess files.

Warning: When you link to a document that is in a directory protected by a .htaccess file you should always use https as the protocol part of the URL (ie. If you fail to link to it over the encrypted SSL connection, the user's password can be intercepted by a third party, compromising the password and "secured" documents.  You also need to ensure your permissions are correct.  Please contact the CS Helpdesk if required; you will be directed to a TST staff member who can assist you.

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Setting up your University of Alberta webpage

IST provides 24GB of storage space hosted on the Andrew File System (AFS) connected to your CCID. Follow IST's instructions to log in to the central server and set up a website in AFS. Once it is set up, your site can be accessed at<CCID>.