Table of contents
GitLab: where is it and how do I sign in?
When we refer to GitLab in this course, we always mean the faculty instance available at https://gitlab.mff.cuni.cz.
Use your CAS credentials to log in, i.e., the
same credentials you use to access SIS. Use the username derived from
your first and family name (such as
doejohn) instead of the numerical
Your first login will activate your GitLab account. Without that, it is impossible to provide you with access to project repositories required for participation in this course and you will not be able to submit the assignments and quizzes required to pass this course.
If you cannot log in, try changing your CAS password (even to a temporary one — you can change it back to your original password later) to trigger password synchronization. Note that you may need to wait up to one full day before the effect of the synchronization becomes visible.
For some new accounts (typically Erasmus students and, in certain situations, also BIOINF students) it is necessary to wait for an extra synchronization round that is performed at midnight every day. Try to change the password the next morning and try logging in to GitLab few hours after that.
Note also that you need to have an account with so-called verified password (this typically applies to Erasmus students). You need to visit one of these offices to verify your account.
If you are from a different faculty than MFF (except BIONF), contact us
as your account could not be automatically synchronized.
Also note that for some accounts, projects were enabled only after you filled-in your e-mail address in your profile.
If nothing helps, contact us as soon as possible at
Do not contact your lab teacher directly but use this alias instead.
Can I use a different operating system?
Well … yes, but be prepared that some things will not work. And you will be on your own. We do not have the manpower to support various other systems that pretend to be just like Linux when they are only bad imitations.
This course is about Linux. Use it for your everyday work (other courses, photo editing or watching a movie) and you may actually find out that it is much easier and comfortable to use than other environments. If you approach it as a must-be evil that you need to live with to pass this course, (a) you might actually have problems passing the course easily and (b) you are deliberately throwing away a chance to broaden your horizons and learn something new.
The truth is that many of the tools we will be using are cross-platform. But Linux (or some of its ancestors) is their native environment where they perform the best.
Can I use other distribution than Fedora?
Do that only if you know what you are doing.
If this is your first encounter with Linux, please, use the provided images from us.
If you need to use other distribution (e.g. you already use other distribution on your notebook), most things should work flawlessly. There are differences in package naming across distributions thus the packages names we mention may slightly differ.
The only big issue we still encounter is that some distributions
still prefer Python 2 as the default
(so that package
python-something refers to Python 2 version of
and for Python 3 you need to install
Some distributions also ship rather old versions of some tools so make sure you have an up-to-date installation (and if your distribution provides three years old software as the norm, seriously consider switching to something else for this course).
There will be of course differences when we talk about installation and package management but the general steps are virtually the same across all major distributions (and if you use some special distribution, you already know what you are doing hence you should be able to translate the commands to your environment).
What are the default passwords?
If you use disk images from us, following are the default usernames and
passwords. For USB/Qemu/VirtualBox, user
root with password
toor). For the Live ISO, there is
has empty password (and auto-login should work).
Change these passwords as soon as possible. You can use the
command for that.
Will the labs/lectures be recorded?
No. Materials are provided in textual format.
Is the virtual lab over Zoom?
No. The virtual lab exists solely to allow enrollment even for students that do not plan to attend labs at all.
My preferred lab is full. What should I do?
You should be able to enroll at least to the virtual lab so that you can have the enrollment confirmed by the study department. It should be possible to register yourself as waiting in queue for a particular lab even when you are already enrolled to a different one.
Let us also repeat here what is stated in the course guide.
The attendance is not mandatory: if you plan to not attend at all, please, enroll to the virtual lab instead of a normal one.
If you do not attend any of the first labs without prior notice, we will automatically move you to the virtual lab.