Operating System

This page collects all the information we have about specific operating systems we deal with and the challenges we will likely come up against with them.

Common tasks

Things you should know how to do on various operating systems.

  • Taking Screenshots in Windows and Mac OSX
  • Configure language setup in Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Mac OSX
  • => Map a network drive - can someone write this article?


All Windows-OS-specific problems and tips should either be here, or be linked here.

Common problems


  • NTLM vs. NTLM 2: Vista defaults to a specific network security protocol and, by default, won't accept anything older than that. You can change this: go into the registry editor (needs admin privileges), navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa, set the DWORD variable "LmCompatibilityLevel" to value 1 (create the variable if it wasn't there), then restart the computer and you should be able to connect to our servers as you can on XP.

Mac OS X

Leopard 10.5

  • Wireless set-up: For some reason, setting up wireless to connect to midd_secure can be very iffy at first. Even with the right settings it will sometimes "remember" PW/settings it shouldn't remember. Play around with it and if you don't have any luck after a couple tries, turn off the Airport then turn it back on, then try again.

If you're having trouble configuring wireless, don't follow the current instructions we have. What should work is clicking on the Airport icon, selecting "midd_secure", entering your username and password, then accepting the certificate. Sometimes it is necessar to visit System Prefs => Network => Airport => Advanced => last tab => Delete all instances of "midd_secure", then try again... No firm steps for now. --Petar


Really, really old versions of Mac can NOT run the newest version of Safari. DO NOT upgrade to the newest version of Safari unless you're sure it will be compatible with the version of Mac.


Call me an optimist but I foresee more and more Linux OS on campus each semester. What will we be dealing with?

  • Asus Eee subnotebook - has a specialized version of Xandros Linux customized for small screens and light portable usage. Has basic web programs, basic office programs, etc. Registering it on the network: does it have Eth port to go wired? Mac address can be found somewhere in the computer settings windows. Ask Haseeb.
  • Ubuntu, on various systems - so far I have seen 4 users using Ubuntu Linux, all on Dell laptops, all slightly (but not necessarily very) tech-savvy people. Ubuntu has a massive amount of community-generated documentation & support available, search for problem solutions w/ Google.

OS features:

  • Virus problems virtually nonexistent.
  • Very stable.
  • Biggest problems are hardware compatibility (drivers etc) and software compatibility. Both of these are improving steadily and a solution to the user's needs can often be found through a good old Google search.

Ubuntu 8.04 on the Middlebury Network

Out of curiosity and to stay true to my dislike of Microsoft, I installed Ubuntu 8.04 on my Dell Latitude D630. I chose to have a dual-boot Ubuntu/Windows XP system in case I ran into trouble somewhere down the road. The installation went smoothly with the Ubuntu installer managing everything for me and all my hardware working after the install...well almost all, the light that indicates wifi availability didn't quite come on. But I never recall it being on ever so I guess all is well.

I noted that the following worked right out of the box:

  • Keyboard
  • Trackpoint and trackpad (including scrolling and double-tap)
  • Wireless card and button
  • Audio buttons (volume up,down and mute)
  • Power Button
  • fn-button cobinatinons
  • suspend on lid closing


I have not been able to find out whether the Middlebury registration portal works with ubuntu.


Knowing that midd_secure is a WPA2 Enterprise network from tinkering around Airport and Vista:

  • Click on the wireless icon on the Ubuntu panel (looks alot cell-phone reception bars)
  • Select Connect to Other Wireless Network...
  • For Network Name type midd_secure
  • Choose WPA2 Enterprise for Wireless Security
  • Choose PEAP for EAP Method
  • Leave Key Type and Phase2 Type to their default values
  • For Identity type your midd username and your password in the password field
  • Leave all the remaining fields blank and click connect

If this does not work:

  • Repeat the steps to make sure you have the correct username and password
  • Try leaving the password field blank and hitting connect so that you are prompted for the password after a connection is estabilshed
  • Make sure that the you are in an area under the covered by the midd wireless network
This can be checked by clicking on the wireless icon and seeing if midd_secure and midd_unplugged are listed as wireless networks
  • If you still have no luck try connecting to midd_unplugged.
If this works then your setting are incorrect. If not you may be in an area with no midd wireless network cover

Connecting to file servers

Web Browsing

MS Office Alternatives


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Getting Help

Greatest thing about Ubuntu is that it has a huge support/fan base and chances are whatever you are stuck trying to figure out, someone has a solution out there.Google and conquer.

Unfortunately, Ubuntu is not an officially supported Operating System by the Helpdesk.The level of support that you will receive from the helpdesk will be limited. However, if you are stumped by an issue, you should not hesitate to place a call or preferably stop by the Walkin section of the Helpdesk for assistance. The knowledge pool of the consultants is pretty impressive and a solution or answer to your problem is likely to be found.

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