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TDDD34 Programming with Applications in Engineering

Home Work

Working On Your Own

Some students may ace this course just by attending lectures, labs and lessons. From experience we know that there are very few such students. In order to pass this course you must be prepared to work on your own. Less than half of the alotted time in this course is actually scheduled and the labs WILL require more time. Most likely you will also need to spend time to finish STONE, the intro assignment and prepare for the exam. Programming is a skill. To master it, you will need lots and lots of practice. There are primarily three ways of doing this:

  • Working on your PC
  • Working at IDA
  • Connecting to IDA from home

Installing MatLab on your PC

A copy of MatLab can be downloaded from the Student Portal along with a licens key and instructions for using that key.

  1. Log in to the Student Portal. With your LiU-ID.
  2. In the menu, click on Software.
  3. Select your method of download. If you don t know what FTP is, choose WWW.
  4. Click on the latest MatLab version in the list.
  5. On the current page is the activation key and instructions. Unfortunately the instructions are in Swedish, so I have translated them into English. Get the key from the Swedish file.
  6. Select your operating system.
  7. Download the iso-file. To install, you can either:
      • Burn the iso-file to a CD and install from that CD.

Working at IDA

The computer rooms at IDA are always open and if they aren't booked for another course, you can always sit there. Even if a computer room has been booked for another course you can sit there but you must leave immediately if a teacher in that course tells you to. If a student of that course shows up and wants your computer, you must also leave immediately.

Connecting to IDA from home

This is perhaps the best option, since you get the benefits from sitting at your own PC and having all your files in one place. However, it is probably the trickiest one to get working. When you sit at IDA in our SU computer rooms, you are actually only sitting at screens and their thin clients. Those clients are connected to the servers called "zaza" in our server halls. We have one server "astmatix", which is specifically intended for people who want to connect to IDA from the outside. It can be reached with programs using the secure shell protocoll (SSH). There are many programs which can do this, and you are free to use which ever you like. One of the easiest ones to use is PuTTY.


Download the executable and run the program. For host name, put in:
astmatix.ida.liu.se
Port should be 22 and the connection type should be SSH. Hit "open" and PuTTY will open a terminal and connect to astmatix. Log in with your LiU-ID, just as you would at IDA. When you put in your password, the terminal will not echo your keys. Fear not, just type in your password and hit enter. When you are logged in you can start emacs with the command:
\emacs -nw
Now you can run MatLab as described in the section MatLab and Emacs.
Note! With PuTTY you do not have x-forwarding. This means that you have only one terminal window at your disposal. You cannot open other windows, MatLab cannot open the plot window for example. You need more advanced SSH-programs to do that.

Page responsible: Erik Nilsson
Last updated: 2012-08-07