EWS Policies

Account Policy

Students in a degree program in Engineering at Illinois or a program that has a partnership with Engineering at Illinois will be given an EWS account. The programs are:

  • Engineering at Illinois degree programs (AERO, BIOE, CIVIL, CS, ECE, ISE, MATSE, MECHSE, NPRE, PHYSICS)
  • Masters in Financial Engineering (MSFE)
  • Statistics and Computer Science Degree
  • Mathematics and Computer Science Degree
  • Chemical Engineering (CHBE in College of LAS)
  • Agricultural Engineering (ABE in College of ACES)
  • LAS Physics

Students enrolled in one of the degree program listed above will be provisioned an EWS account and a home directory, as long as they are registered for classes during the academic year. The EWS account allows students to access their home directory and to use Engineering applications from any EWS lab.

When students in these programs leave the University, either through graduation or by other means, their EWS account will be terminated and home directory will be removed from the EWS storage system. The files cannot be restored once they have been removed. The removal will take place in between semester transitions based on the schedule below:

  • Fall to Spring Transition: January 1
  • Spring to Summer Transition: June 1  
  • Summer to Fall Transition: August 11

Before leaving the University, students should copy all the files that they need from their home directory before the above dates. Instructions for retrieving files from the EWS storage system.

Students in non-Engineering degree programs, but registered in an engineering course will be given an EWS account.

Students enrolled in degree programs outside of Engineering (those not listed above) will be provisioned an EWS account with a home directory while they are registered in an Engineering course. The EWS account allows students to access their home directory and to use Engineering applications for their course from any EWS lab.

When the course ends, this course-based EWS account will be deactivated and access to the home directory will be terminated. Students should copy all the files that they need from their home directory before the last day of the semester. Instructions for retrieving files from the EWS storage system.

Lab Reservation Policy

While lab reservation requests are generally approved on a first come first served basis, the primary function of the labs is to support instruction for Engineering at Illinois.  Therefore, reservation use-cases determine the priority of the request, which may result in existing reservations having to be changed.  The use-case priority list is as follows:

  1. Lab Maintenance
  2. Recurring formal course lecture and discussion sections.
  3. One-time reservation requests on a first-come first-served basis.
  4. Requests from outside Engineering at Illinois will be reviewed on a case by case basis.

Because shared EWS labs are for general college use and already have a high reservation volume, we are unable to take reservations for office hours. Instructors are welcome to hold office hours in departmental labs (subject to availability, contact your department) or in EWS labs during open hours when the lab is not otherwise reserved while sharing with students using the lab for other coursework. We apologize for any inconvenience, but we must make sure our labs are available to the largest number of students possible. Thank you for your understanding.

In the event that an existing reservation will need to be changed to accommodate a request with higher priority to the instructional mission of Engineering at Illinois, EWS will work with all parties involved to see if alternate arrangements are feasible.


Lab Policy

  1. No food is permitted. Drinks are permitted in all locations except Siebel Center.
  2. No disruptive behavior. Headphones shouldn't be heard by others. Cell phone usage should be kept to a minimum.
  3. No sleeping is permitted.
  4. Your EWS account is not to be shared.
  5. All students are required to vacate the EWS labs at the designated lab closing times.
  6. Educational use of workstations takes priority.
  7. Machines left unattended for more than 10 minutes will be logged out.
  8. Do not reboot or unplug lab equipment.
  9. EWS is not responsible for lost, stolen, or unattended items.
  10. All computing activities must comply with University Policies.

Violation of any EWS policy can result in account suspension and/or loss of access to EWS resources.


An EWS account provides a free print quota of $24, or 300 pages per semester for any student who is enrolled in an eligible degree program. This free print quota is provided to meet basic user printing needs, and is reset to 300 pages the day before the beginning of each semester.  Individuals who are only registered for an engineering class or enrolled in an engineering minor do not receive a print quota. Temporary EWS accounts are not issued a free print quota. All users are able to purchase pages in $8 blocks of 100 pages through the EWS print billing plan. (see: my.engr Print Quota) The following lists free print quotas per semester:

  • Fall - 300 pages ($24)
  • Spring - 300 pages ($24)
  • Summer Session I & II combined - 300 pages ($24)

*Juniors receive 400 pages, Seniors receive 500 pages

EWS strives to provide reliable and error-free printing services. However, we recognize that some printing problems are unavoidable. Because the vast majority of print problem reports we receive are due to user error, our general policy is not to grant refunds. The following printing mishaps are examples of instances where refunds would not be granted:

  • Multiple copies were printed
  • Garbled output from using command line lpr or mpage on a .pdf file
  • Encoding related errors

However, some EWS printing problems are the result of circumstances outside the user's control. When this can be shown to be the case, we do grant refunds. These types of problems may include:

  • Toner outages
  • Power outages
  • Print system malfunctions (with evidence)

If you wish to seek a refund, please retain any pages that printed improperly and email ews [at] illinois [dot] edu. Your email should include detailed information about when the problem occurred, what application was being used, what file was being printed, and which printer you were trying to print to.

For more details about printing and "best practices," please see our printing guide.

Background Policy

Policies for advertising on EWS computers:

1) Events advertised must be sponsored by the College of Engineering, or by a College of Engineering RSO.
2) Images must be submitted in a graphics format (jpg, png) and be exactly 800x600 pixels in resolution. The image must be submitted to ews [at] illinois [dot] edu along with the requested display dates.
3) Text in images must be properly formatted with no spelling or grammatical errors.
4) Images are displayed for 1-week on a first-come first-served basis. EWS staff reserve the right to modify requested display dates to fit with preexisting requests.
5) EWS staff has final say as to whether or not an image is acceptable, and will only post images as workload permits. Display dates are therefore not guaranteed.

Research Computing Policy

The EWS Labs are not intended for research computing. EWS computers are intended only to support instruction. Installing or running any software not authorized by EWS or directly related to College of Engineering coursework is considered Research Computing. Please contact your department or advisor to find out what computing facilities are available to you.

Maintenance Window

EWS staff may reboot workstations and servers daily between the hours of 5am and 7am to perform preventative maintenance, software upgrades, and operating system patches. Whenever possible, advance warning will be given.

Additionally, every Monday morning between midnight and 4am EWS labs will receive the latest patches from Microsoft and other vendors such as Java, Adobe, etc. These patches will necessitate a system restart. This is a scheduled weekly event, unlike the 5am to 7am window which is for additional maintenance.

Get Help

Questions about this topic? Don't see what you're looking for?

Email engrit-help [at] illinois [dot] edu, call the Help Desk at 217-333-1313, or contact your primary IT support professional.