File Servers

Using File Servers

Differences between the servers

Each folder space has different characteristics and is suitable for different uses.


See Middfiles - Contents and Structure.

  • Muskrat: High quota, space allotted for each class that has media storage needs, with a private personal folder inside each class folder. Useful for storing large media files for movie and audio projects related to media classes. If students need to store large files on the network but they don't have access to Muskrat storage for that class, they can request it from the Helpdesk.
  • MiddMedia - Storage and online hosting for videos and other media.
  • Midd-Unix: Personal web pages (no longer being used.) See Creating Web Pages for details.

End user guides

Default Server Quotas - Email, MiddFiles, and Midd-Unix

See: Default_Quotas

Connecting to File Servers

The best way to connect to middfiles and manage your files is by "mapping" or "mounting" a network drive. The instructions depend on your operating system:

If you're off-campus or using someone else's computer, may want to use Web Access for an quick way to reach files on Middfiles without the need for VPN.  See Off-campus Access for more details.


Troubleshooting steps

  • If you get an error, double-check the server address to ensure that you spelled it correctly; also make sure that you types in your username with midd\ before it.
  • The network address cannot be found or the network is not available: Ensure that the "TCP/IP NetBios Helper" service is running. ## Go to the Start menu -> Run ## type in "services.msc" and click OK ## In the Services Management Console look for "TCP/IP NetBios Helper", right-click it, select "Properties". ## In the Properties window that appears, use the drop-down menu in the middle to ensure that the "Startup Type" is set as "Automatic" and click apply ## click the button named "Start" inside the properties window.
  • Your computer needs to have a unique name to connect to the network. ## Right-click "My Computer" and choose Properties ## Choose "Computer Name" tab and click the "Change" button ## Enter in a new name. Consider using your username and a one-word descriptor so that the name is unique, such as "pmitrevs-XP". The name can't be longer than around 11 characters. ## Click OK to close the dialogs and restart the computer immediately.

Other Problems & Questions

Recovering a File Deleted from a Server (Mac or PC)

It is possible to recover a file that has been deleted from middfiles. PC users can right-click on the folder that contains the missing file (or the folder that contains the missing folder) and select Properties from the pop-up menu.  Then click on the "Previous Versions" tab.

Alternatively, long term backups are made of middfiles on the following schedule:

Full backups are done once per week and incrementals during the rest of the week. The weekly full backups are retained for 60 days. The first full backup of each month is retained for one year. The first full backup of each year is retained for two years.

Troubleshooting Classes and Dropbox folder issues

See: Troubleshooting_Classes_and_Dropbox_Folder_Issues

Student's Documents Don't Appear in the Dropbox on Classes

Issue Description

Professor cannot see a student's documents when he puts them in the Dropbox of the Classes folder (SPAN0220F). The last time his student submitted something that didn't show up, he told him to e-mail him the document, and he would manually place it in the folder. When he did so, it said there was all ready something there; however, it's not visible. It's only for one of his students.


Students may need to drag files from their computer to the Dropbox.  Since they can't read files that are in the Dropbox, they will not be able to save properly from a program such as Microsoft Word.

Mac OS X freezes for a brief period after disconnecting from the network

This commonly occurs when the computer is connected to a file server and loses network connection (the network cable is unplugged, or the computer goes to sleep, or the server/network is temporarily unavailable).

The solution is to disconnect from any connected file servers before closing the lid, putting the computer to sleep, disconnecting the cable or any other action that may terminate the network connection.

To disconnect from a connected server, open the Finder and click on the eject button next to the server name in the Finder's side bar (located on the left). Another way to disconnect from a server is to view your Desktop and find the server's icon on the desktop. Click on the icon once and from the "File" menu in the top left corner of the screen, select "Eject".

Sending Large Files

There are several free services that let you send large files:

www.YouSendIt.com - 100 MB maximum

www.send6.com - No size limit - 6 files maximum

www.datataxi.com - 500 MB maximum

However we do not and cannot guarantee the quality or security of the above-mentioned services.

Faculty, staff and students are allocated 50 MB of personal space on Middlebury's community web-server. Here are instructions on how to place a file on this web server.  After a file is placed on the server, it can be access using any web browser on the following link: http://community.middlebury.edu/~username/file-name.ext where the word "username" is the username of the person who uploaded the file, and the word "file-name.ext" is the name and extension of the file. You can then send the link to the person needing the uploaded file and the person can easily download it. *note: midd-unix account creation is not automatic.  If no web page exists at your community site (per above link, without "file-name.ext" at the end), you may request the creation of such an account via the Helpdesk.

For faculty working on projects with collegues from other institutions, it might be possible to create an FTP account where the files can be uploaded and the login username and password can be shared. The network administrators at Middlebury or the other institution should be able to help with this.


Storage Services

You can also upload your files to an online free storage provider, which in turn will provide you with a link your files. You can send this link to other people to view and download your files.

One of these services is: www.4shared.com (5.00 GB free Space, 100 Mb maximum per file)

However we do not and cannot guarantee the quality or security of the above-mentioned services. Tracking details: Author: Isaac Sadaqah Date: 10/12/2008

Cannot connect to midd-unix aka community

Note that midd-unix account are no longer generated automatically, as most customers are using segue.middlebury.edu, blogs.middlebury.edu or mediawiki.middlebury.edu

You can still request a midd-unix account, please contact the helpdesk.

Connecting to the RHINO server with a Mac

Before connecting to the server called RHINO using a Mac, you should follow Apple's instructions here: http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1564


Files on a server are not visible

  • Problem: Files on a server are not visible when connected using a Mapped Network Drive, but were visible when using a Mac. Most likely, all the files are there, but the Windows Explorer cannot see them because of an illegal file name.
  • Cause: Incompatible characters in the name of a file or multiple files. Windows Explorer may be unable to read files that have accented letters in their name, or have one or more of these characters:
    \ / : * ? " < > |

  • Solutions:
  1. Access the folder in question from a Mac and remove any illegal characters from the filenames. One invalid file name could make an entire folder to appear blank.
  2. Try accessing the folder using NetStorage http://go.middlebury.edu/files - you might be able to remove the invalid characters.
  • List of invalid/illegal characters in file names:
\ / : * ? " < > |
Accented characters of certain encoding.

Recovering Files From a MiddFiles Using Windows Explorer on a PC

  • TODO

Classes Folders, Segue Sites, and Distribution Lists


Permissions for classes folders on middfiles and access to class websites on segue are managed by distribution lists in our global address book. There are four different distribution lists created for each class. The set of distirbution lists is distinct for each semester. For example, a biology 140a class that is taught in the fall and in the spring of 2009 will have two seperate sets of distribution lists for each class. For the fall class, the distribution lists will begin with biol0140A-f09. For the Spring class, the distribution lists will begin with biol0140A-s09. The four lists created for each class each semester are:

  1. classname-semester
  2. classname-semester-audits
  3. classname-semester-instructors
  4. classname-semester-students

Note that all of these lists will also act as email lists in addition to granting permissions. It is perfectly possible to send an email to classname-semester-instructors which will reach everyone who is a member of that group. If you wish to send an email to everyone involved in the class, use classname-semester. For more information see the Membership section.


As a general note, the audits, instructors and students lists are all sublists of the classname-semester list. Anyone who is made a member of audits, instructors, or students will be automatically added to the classname-semester group. For information on specific lists:

2. classname-semester-audits is empty (has no members) by default and is owned by the classname-semester-instructors list.

3. The initial members of classname-semester-instructors is determined by banner. The official instructor(s) in banner will be the initial members of classname-semester-instructors and the list will be owned by itself.

2 and 3. Since classname-semester-audits and classname-semester-instructors are owned by a group, they can be manually edited by anyone who is a member of classname-semester-instructors (yes the instructors group manages itself).

1 and 4. The other two lists, classname-semester and classname-semester-students are generated automatically from data in banner and cannot be manually modified by anyone, including LIS. The ownership of these lists will be important for managing permissions for individuals to both segue and class folders on middfiles. For exact instructions on how to add or remove individuals from a distribution list see below.


1. classname-semester

This group controls permissions to the class segue website. Anyone who is a member of this group will have permission to view the site after they login on segue. Anyone who is both a member of either the All Faculty or the All Staff group AND a member of this when the site is INITIALLY created will be set as an owner for the site. Typically this is ONLY the primary teacher for the class. Anyone staff or faculty member added to this group AFTER the website is created will not be set as an owner. If anyone else wants to edit the segue site, they will have to be given appropriate permissions by the owner of the site using the "roles" interface. For more info on how to do so, see this link

2. classname-semester-audits

This group grants student level permissions to the class folders on middfiles. Anyone who is a member of this group should have exactly the same access to the folders as classname-semester-students.

3. classname-semester-instructors

This group grants teacher/instructor level permissions to the class folders on middfiles. Anyone who is a member of this group should have the same instructor level access to the class folders on middfiles that instructors had on the old pre-DFS classes server.

4. classname-semester-students

This group grants student level permissions to the class folders on middfiles. Anyone who is a member of this group shuold have the same student level access to the class folders on middfiles that students had on the old pre-DFS classes server.

Changing Folder Permissions on MiddFiles

redirect to Managing Access to Classes Folders

Powered by MediaWiki