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CS 163/164 Spring 2018

Lab 1 - Course Logistics and Linux Tutorial

Tuesday, Jan. 16th or Wednesday, Jan. 17th

Objectives of this Lab

  1. To discuss course logistics and communication,
  2. login to department systems,
  3. explore the course website,
  4. login to the Canvas course,
  5. learn how to launch Linux applications,
  6. introduce a small set of Linux commands,
  7. and discuss the Linux file system and play with text files.

Course Logistics

  1. Lectures (including peer instruction), 2 labs, 1 programming assignment, and 1 online assignment weekly.
  2. Bring your iClicker to lecture every lecture, TA will show you how to register on Canvas.
  3. Labs are where the hands-on part of the course takes place, i.e. where you learn to program!
  4. Labs are open 24/7, building and lab access comes with your student card.
  5. COMSC 110 is Windows, COMSC 120 is Linux, COMSC 130 is seminar room.
  6. Help desk is breakout room on north side of COMSC 120 lab, see hours on syllabus.
  7. No food and only covered drinks allowed in the labs.
  8. Most communication with course staff is help desk or Piazza bulletin board.


You will take notes from today's lecture and show them to the TA at the end of class to receive credit. A single sheet of paper will suffice, there is paper at the front of the class.

Logging In

  1. Login to the machine using your electronic ID (same username that you use for RamWeb).
  2. The initial password should be your student ID number (same as nine digit number on your RamCard).
  3. The teaching assistant will show you how to change your password as described below.
  4. Troubleshooting: Raise your hand if you cannot login!

Class Website

  1. Start your preferred internet browser and type in your course URL
  2. Note that semester that appears as part of the url!
  3. Look at the syllabus and progress pages.
  4. Open another tab and in the url type http://info.canvas.colostate.edu/login.aspx
  5. Login to Canvas using your EID and password and make sure you can see this course.

Launching Applications

Useful Terminal Commands

Your TA will show you how to use the man command. For each of the following, figure out what action is performed and try the command. Be careful with the remove command! Your TA will talk about launching programs from a terminal using the amperand (&), and will show you how to look at the history of commands, and how auto completetion with the tab key works.

Linux File System

Your TA will describe the Linux file system. Make sure you know each of the following shortcuts for directory names:

Manipulating Text Files

Perform the following tasks and add to your notes to show the TA:
  1. Use gedit to create the Name.txt:
     gedit Name.txt & 
  2. The file should contain one line which has your first and last name.
  3. Save the file .
  4. Copy Name.txt to another file called Name.bak
  5. Compare the contents of the files by using the diff command. Are they the same? How can you tell?
  6. Open Name.bak as a second tab in gedit.
  7. Add a second line to Name.bak with your preferred email address.
  8. Compare the files again. Are they the same? How can you tell?
  9. Remove Name.txt
  10. Move Name.bak to Name.txt
  11. Cat the contents of Name.txt. Is your email there?

Log into Canvas and take the Lab1 "quiz" to get credit for the recitation. In future recitations, you will answer the first question, then show a TA your lab work. The TA will type in a code on a second question. The combination of the two will give you full credit for the recitation. For this recitation, there is only the first question.

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