Status regarding remote login difficulty

Dear HPCC Users,

As you are all probably aware, ITS made a change to its firewall rules that blocked access to campus via SSH last Tuesday, 12/20/16. The SSH protocol is fundamental to the operation of HPCC, which provides access to the center by remote login, file transfer, and various other aspects. Unfortunately, ITS did not announce this change to HPCC nor to anyone else on campus. Thus we, along with every other facility on campus, were caught unaware when no one off campus could login. This blockage remains in effect generally for all of campus as of Thursday, 12/22/16. 

ITS reopened the HPCC port, gateway.hpcc.msu.edu (35.9.12.10) on Wednesday, 12/21/16 after Vice President Hsu agreed to take responsibility for security matters at HPCC for 30 days. In those 30 days, we will revisit with ITS their impact on the center and what actions should have been taken with regards to security at HPCC. I'm sure others, both individually and as a group, will be doing the same. 

We at HPCC have not been notified of any increased security risks to the center or any specific threats to our systems. We will continue to be proactive to ensure the security of the HPCC systems and data.

Finally, if you get locked out again, it is suggested that you use the MSU virtual private network by visiting the web page https://vpn.msu.edu . When you log in and hit the "Start" button, a VPN tunnel is created and should allow you remote access. Not everyone has access to the VPN (for example undergrads are excluded) but many will be able to use this if SSH ports get blocked again. 

We will try and keep you updated on the situation at this wiki page: http://bit.ly/2hgMt8R

Sincerely,

Bill Punch
HPC director
Assoc. Prof CSE