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Local Unsupported Software

Local Unsupported Software

In response to requests from users to install software not supported by CSE, we have a network file system for local `unsupported' software, which can be accessed as /soft/lus. Please note that the CSE system managers are NOT supporting this software in any way except for maintaining the disk and making periodic backups.

How to Install LUS Packages

If you are a CSE, CPE, or LBS student and you know of a useful package not supported by the CSE department and you would like to install and personally support this package as ``Unsupported Software'' you can do the following:

  1. Send mail to, requesting permission to install the package. Your mail should include:
    • Name (and VERSION) of the package
    • Approximate size of the installed package (in MB)
    • Why this software is of interest to CSE users (in general)
    • Verification that this is not licensed software
  2. A directory will be created, chowned to you, appropriate for that package and version. Note that although this directory is owned by you, it does not count against your quota. You may not use it for personal file space.
  3. You must copy/install the package in that directory. The filesystem is only writable from arctic, so you will need to rlogin to there to do the installation.
  4. You have two weeks to complete installation and test the package.
  5. After two weeks the directory ownership is changed to user `lus'. (This is necessary for minimalistic security).
  6. If you need to make changes to the software, you must send mail to and ownership will be temporarily restored.
  7. Please post to msu.cse.announce so that others know of the addition of your package to our system.


It is REQUIRED that you setup the software in the following fashion:

  • package/bin - all executables should be dynamically linked and stripped. (See the man page on the strip command.)
  • package/src - source code if available (without .o files).
  • package/etc - additional license/startup kind of files.
  • package/lib - libraries if any.
  • package/doc - any documentation like user manual, installation manual, etc.
  • package/man - man pages if any. (Should have both man and cat pages. Use `catman' command to generate cat pages for the man pages.)
  • package/README.local - See below.

Please make sure when building the package you use dynamic linking (link with both -L and -R options) so that users need not set their LD_LIBRARY_PATH for using the package. (See man pages for cc and ld for more info on this.)

The README.local file must provide the following information:

  • Name/Version of the package.
  • A brief description as to what the package is all about.
  • Target audience (for whom this package is meant).
  • Source of the package (ftp site and directory, etc).
  • Any special stuff you did to setup the package.
  • Your name and contact information
  • Expected graduation date.
  • Additional comments if needed.
Please refer to the package `ncftp-2.0.7' in /soft/lus as an example for installing software on the unsupported disk. Use /soft/lus/ncftp-2.0.7/README.local as a template for filling in information.

Users are fully responsible for maintaining software they install. This includes answering questions from users, upgrading to newer versions, fixing bugs, etc. When a user graduates, loses their account, or ceases to actively support a package without passing the responsibility of maintaining the package to somebody else, the package will be considered removable.

If your account is a short term account (i.e., you aren't CSE, CPE, or LBS) you may not install LUS software. LUS packages that are not actively supported by a current CSE user will be removed.

How to use packages in /soft/lus

Users need to add the directory /soft/lus/package/bin to the PATH environment variable (or use an alias) to use the package. Similarly you need to add /soft/lus/package/man to your MANPATH environment variable to access the man pages of the package. Any questions regarding the package should be directed to the user who is responsible to maintaining the package. The contact address of the user is in a file called README.local in the package directory. Any questions sent to regarding any package on the unsupported disk will be UNANSWERED.


It is impossible for the CSE managers to verify that the software installed in /soft/lus is secure and does what it is supposed to. Use LUS software AT YOUR OWN RISK. The Department of Computer Science and Engineering (in particular the system management) is NOT responsible for any kind of damage done to your account or files if you use LUS software.

You may not install software, nor make modifications, that harm other users, or violate the privacy of their account.

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions regarding ``Unsupported Software'', please send mail to