Sources of Help

A list of the various ways you can get help in the department

Reviewed by Bil Hays 4/8/2016

This article tells about ways you can get help, including sending mail to help, the Computer Services help line, the Computer Services pager, submitting a remedy ticket via the web, the front desk, Computer Services help pages, online manual pages, the CS help web page, asking your neighbor, and after hours help.


Mailing help


Sending mail to “help” is how one usually goes about making a request for services or information from Computer Services.  Mail to “help” is read by a member of the Computer Services staff 9-12 and 2-5 on workdays, and we generally watch the mail pretty regularly at other times as well. Your question will be logged into the Remedy issue tracking and escalation system.  You should receive an acknowledgement message as soon as your email is processed and assigned a ticket number. See here for some info on our local system.


Computer Services help line


If you cannot readily send your request or question by email (e.g., your computer or the network is down), you can call 919-590-6172, which rings in the offices of several Computer Services staff members as well as in our electronics shop, SN128.  Note that this line is not manned all the time and it is not equipped with voice mail, but it is worth a try during working hours.

In Cases  of Emergency


For EMERGENCIES, follow this procedure.


Submitting a Remedy ticket via the web


Go to to submit a Remedy ticket via the web. See here for info on the Remedy ticket system.


The front desk, SN112


The front desk is staffed by full-time employees employees of Computer Services during the first two weeks of the fall semester and the first two weeks of the spring semester, 9-12 and 2-5.  You can come by there or call us at 919-590-6172.


Online manuals


We have the standard UNIX online manual, with some local additions.   “Man command” gives information on command, and “man man” tells about the man command itself.


CS Help web page


The Computer Services web page, at, has a variety of useful information about our local setup.


Asking your neighbor


Perhaps one of the easiest and most effective ways to obtain an answer to a question, meet a friend, and build a network of support is to ask the person at the computer next to you if he knows the answer to your question.  Many of the users in the Department are quite sophisticated in the ways of our systems, and practically everyone is ready and willing to help out.


After hours help


See here for information on how to get assistance after normal working hours