Using Departmental Accounts on RCI



What is a Departmental Account?

A departmental account on RCI is in most respects just like a personal account on RCI, with one important difference: it has no password of its own but instead uses the passwords of specific authorized users to access it. Consequently, anyone who is going to have access to the departmental account must have a personal RCI account. This means that students or non-Rutgers employees who do not have a faculty/staff status in the Rutgers Online Directory will not be able to work on this account, unless you obtain a guest account for them on RCI.

See the section Submit a Request for a Departmental Account for instructions on how to request a departmental account.

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Departmental Account Audits

The established departmental accounts will be audited periodically. Once a year, an audit may occur for every account. This audit may include, but is not limited to, checking to see if the account is still desired and/or validating any virtual host name or virtual mail domain associated with the account. If there is no response to any inquiries made to the account owners/admins in this regard within one week, we will attempt to contact the account owners/admins again. Failing confirmation a second time, the account will be deleted (as will any virtual host/mail domains associated with the account).

Audit Webtool: During the audit period, departmental owners/admins will be required to login to a webtool ( and Save or Delete each departmental account they own (as well as any virtual host/mail domains associated with the account). If there is ONLY a departmental owner for a particular account, we will follow the most recent action (Save or Delete) chosen. If there are BOTH departmental owners and admins for a particular account, the following rule shall apply:

If the owner chose Delete OR did not choose any action, but the admin chose Save, the admin must take over as owner by receiving permission from the current owner OR a Dean, Director, or Department Chair. The account will be deleted if this transfer of ownership does not happen.

Following an audit, accounts for which no response is received will be closed.

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Using the Departmental Account through SSH

To log into a departmental account, you must give the departmental account name as the username, and include an authorized username in the password area, separated from the authorized user's password by a colon (:).

For example, to access an RCI account called deptacct, an authorized person with the RCI account name of user and a password of 1234Abcd would use


as the username, and


as the password. Of course, for a real account, you would replace deptacct with the actual departmental account name, user with your username, and 1234Abcd with your password.

After logging into the departmental account, the user can do anything with the departmental account that was possible with his/her personal RCI account: send e-mail, create web pages, etc. (Note: email services for all RCI accounts will be decommissioned during the Spring 2017 semester.)

Moreover, if more than one person is authorized to use the account, more than one person can log into the departmental account at the same time. This both makes some tasks easier and creates problems. For example, those who share access to a departmental account must take care that two or more people don't try to write to a file at the same time. (The RCS (Revision Control System), a program that manages multiple revisions of files, is available on all OIT central systems. Type man rcsintro at your system prompt for further information and instructions. - ed.) Furthermore, two people should not access a departmental account's mail files at the same time, at risk of damaging those files and their contents.

You exit from the departmental account as you would any other account, by typing:


If you have an SSH program that automatically connects you to RCI as your personal account, you will have to give the username of the departmental account in the hostname, as if it were an e-mail address:


Provide the password in the user:1234Abcd form above.
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Adding or Dropping Access to a Departmental Account

Before you can add someone to your departmental account, he/she must own a personal account on RCI. If the person to be added does not have a RCI account and is a faculty or staff member, use the Services Activation tool at to activate an account on RCI, and choose RCI from the list of services. (Note: faculty/staff associated with a Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences (RBHS) unit must write to to request permission to activate an RCI account, for data security reasons.) Otherwise, you'll need to obtain a guest account at for him/her. For students who are not listed as faculty/staff in the Rutgers Online Directory, you will also need to request a guest account on RCI for them.

You can add another RCI user to your departmental account, by going to the following web page: and logging in with your RCI username (NetID) and password. This web page allows you to perform account administrative tasks such as to list users who have access to the departmental account, to add or remove a user from the account. Under the "ChangePrivs" submenu, you can grant permission to additional departmental account users to be able to add users and change user privileges.

Getting the Departmental Account's E-Mail

Email services for all RCI accounts will be decommissioned during the Spring 2017 semester. Until such time, the following still applies:

If you're using an RCI-based mail program, such as pine, you can also use it in the departmental account.

If you're using a desktop-based mail program, such as Pegasus Mail, Eudora, Netscape Mail, or Outlook Express, you have to provide the departmental account name and user:Abcd1234 password in the appropriate place for your mail program; check the documentation for your specific mail reader. For information on configuring Windows-based mail readers, consult the OIT documentation page, This will cause the mail reader to get the mail from the departmental account, rather than the authorized user's account.
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Transferring Files to a Departmental Account

Transferring files through Secure FTP requires logging into the departmental account just as you would through SSH: use the



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Submit a Request for a Departmental Account

To request a departmental account, the department or project head, department chair, director, or other appropriately responsible administrator should use the online form at .
It will ask for the appropriate information and send a request automatically via e-mail.

Need Help for RCI Accounts?

Mail any additional questions and inquiries about RCI accounts to