We offer the same services to both individuals (personal accounts) and groups (group accounts).

Historically group accounts were called 'society accounts', but we changed the name to 'group accounts' in 2020 to better reflect their intended usage. Group accounts can be used as a shared, non-personal account by any group of individuals who hold personal accounts. Group accounts are commonly used by college or university societies, but they might also be used to manage research or degree projects, social events, academic networks, and any other collaboration.

The guiding motivation behind most SRCF system administration policies is to provide as much flexibility to users as possible, within the constraints of security, manageability and affordability. These policies can often be amended quickly to accommodate the unforeseen needs of individuals and groups trying to do something novel.

If you feel that there is a service or application that is not provided at the moment, please feel free to request it from the sysadmins.

Web hosting

  • subdomain URLs:
    • for personal accounts
    • for group accounts
  • use your own domain with a site hosted by us
  • server-side scripting in PHP, Perl, Python and Ruby
  • a liberal CGI environment (compared to most other hosting in the University, and the internet industry at large)
  • Apache server-side includes and .htaccess files
  • simple Raven authentication via mod_ucam_webauth
  • HTTPS certificates to secure your site
  • lifelong web address forwarding after you leave the university


  • base email addresses:
    • for personal accounts
    • for group accounts
  • a local mailbox with IMAP and web-based access
  • simple forwarding of mail to an external address
  • additional addresses (e.g. or advanced filtering via forwarding rules
  • Mailman mailing lists, with web-based administration
  • lifelong email forwarding after you leave the university

Shell and files

  • 2 GB of space for files and web content (and more if required)
  • SSH access to an Ubuntu shell server, so you can experiment with a Linux box to your heart's content
  • graphical desktop access via VNC and SSH
  • SCP and SFTP access to your files
  • a web-based terminal, so you can access the server and your files with only a web browser


Mattermost is a flexible, open source messaging platform that enables secure team collaboration. You can use it for your society, with friends or for any group.

  • Real-time collaboration
  • Organized conversations in teams and channels
  • File, image and link sharing

Learn more about Mattermost here


  • MySQL and PostgreSQL databases, with phpMyAdmin and phpPgAdmin for web-based management
  • an IRC server and web interface, to chat with other members and sysadmins
  • a Gopher server, if a web server is too mainstream for you
  • friendly and helpful sysadmins and support to help with any issues

All for free? Yes

Personal and group accounts

Each user of the SRCF has a personal account they can use to login to most services (shell, files, webmail, and so on). Prospective members can join the SRCF to create their account.

Group accounts provide a separate space for one or more people (the account administrators) to share control over hosting files or a website. We encourage individuals to become SRCF members in order to host a website for a society or group of people.

Any existing user may go ahead and create a new group account. We recommend all group accounts name at least two administrators – this will help to maintain continuity of the account should one of the administrators leave the university. Admins may be added or removed at any time, but new admins will need to sign up for a personal SRCF account if they don't already have one.