Monthly Board Meeting

 7:00 PM, DECEMBER 13, 2001

 Greenbelt Police Station




 Board members: Gilbert Lee, Mary Camp, Doug Love, Peggy Bates, and Leonie Penney

 Member: Karl Grotke. Non-members: Robert Beers, Dennis Jelalian


1. Meeting called to order at a little past 7:00 PM


2. Additional Issues to Agenda:

            a) Dennis Jelalian: Computer Lab.

b) Karl Grotke: packages on Greenbelt server

c) Karl Grotke is interested in a director’s position.

 Change in Agenda order: item 9 (legal report) moved up, as Doug has to leave


3. Agenda Approved (Peggy moved, Lee seconded, unanimous)


4. Doug Love reports:

* No news from Legal Committee

* Installed Form-mail in his directory. Can be modified for the Greenbelt Arts Center to allow for on-line reservations to be placed.

* Needs to postpone the Computer Building class he was going to teach from December 17 to some date in March or April


5. Secretary Report (Leonie Penney)

Leonie distributed the minutes of the November 8, 2001 Board Meeting. Once change was made: under item 5 (CLASSES) the date should read Monday, December 17

Minutes approved (Peggy moved, Mary seconded, unanimous). Leonie will e-mail approved minutes to Neil for posting.


6. Karl Grotke: 1) upon being asked, has agreed to investigate the possibility of becoming the GIAC SYSMAN position - modified to exclude any bookkeeping functions which include handling money. Gil and Peggy will continue to take care of picking up the mail and depositing the checks. Peggy detailed the SYSMAN functions, such as creating/deleting accounts, sending in Work Orders and creating passwords. Karl and Peggy will meet on Thursday evening December 20th to go over director responsibilities and Peggy will give Karl more information regarding the responsibilities of the SYSMAN position.

 2) Peggy moved, Gil seconded to nominate Karl Grotke to become a member of the GIAC Board. Unanimously approved. Karl accepted. Doug left after the vote.


7. Vice President Report (Mary Camp)


* Her November classes on "Spam, Cookies etc.: popups and a pinch of security" and on "how to buy a computer" were a success. Ten people attended the first class, 11 the second one.

* Regarding Doug's December class on building a computer: see 4. above.

* In January Mary will schedule, together with Sharon Natoli, a Round Table Discussion on computer problems. The title may be "Ask the Experts", and questions may be submitted beforehand. Sharon had suggested this (see minutes of October 11 Board meeting, item 10).

* Mary has a problem with our voice mail introduction which asks people to leave name and telephone number when they call to ask for a handout for the class. She does not want to have to call them back. Mary said she will prepare a special voice-mail message for those who call in to ask for a handout. In that case they only have to leave their name. Peggy asked everybody who had given classes (such as Mary, Doug, Karl) to give her a summary of the classes given. This will enable her to give them the proper credit.


8. Treasurer Report (Peggy Bates)

* The Fire Proof Cabinet arrived early December at Peggy's doorstep!

* In November we showed a profit of $ 45.60. For the year so far it is $ 172.51

* To reduce our tax liability for the year we need to spend approximately $80 on supplies. The file cabinet did not help in this respect because as an asset the cost is depreciated over many months in relatively small amounts. We do need: paper of various colors (Mary), envelopes, blue cards, labels, flip charts, a flip-chart-stand, magic markers, masking tape (the type that does not damage walls), white paper (Peggy). Also xeroxing costs for Mary's classes should be re-imbursed. And, because of the depreciation feature, our new computer can now be bought any time.


9. System Administrator report (Anne Andersen was not present. Peggy Bates reported)

*We lost 1 member (Norma van Allen), gained 1 member (Bob Beers).

* Many checks have not been deposited: members complain, cannot straighten out their bank accounts. Gil will try to retrieve checks from Anne. Anne will not receive a November credit for Sysman, as she did not perform any of the functions in November. Karl Grotke is contemplating taking on the Sysman duties (see 6 above).

 * Peggy discussed the following problems with Margaret:

- a) our server attacking other servers: no new input. Margaret is investigating.

- b) Security issues regarding access to confidential directories.

- c) Margaret will enable us to do our own system management by December 31.

- d) Margaret will make the disk usage report available via web interface

- e) Users will be told the information BooNet needs to address any connection problems. We are planning to poll the users with respect to any problems they may be having with our new ISP.

- f) Web Mail is now available. URL: This enables users to access their e-mail from any place. But Web Mail does not store SENT messages. Karl suggested we inform users of the availability of Web Mail, in addition to sending them the Problem Log,

- g) SPAM. Since the potential head of the SPAM Committee (Doug) left early, this item will be brought up next time.

- h) Rates for domain hosting: $ 25.00 to set a new domain, $ 4.00/month to host the domain. As the space will still be part of's space, no additional $ 1.00 for the personal web page will be charged. However, if additional domain(s) increase the bandwidth significantly, monthly charges may increase to $9.00. This all ($ 4 or $ 9) will be added to the regular monthly $ 15 fee.

The Board then discussed the hosting of the New Deal Cafe website. Peggy moved to add a $1.00 markup to the ISP's charge of $ 4.00 for hosting the domain. Gil seconded, unanimously approved.  This markup will apply to any domain hosting done through  So right now the basic of $15/month will be increased by $5 for hosting a domain, for a monthly total of $ 20. This includes the basic 5 Mbytes of web space. Karl will inform the New Deal Cafe accordingly and ask for a check.


*10. Dennis Jelalian presented a rough proposal for establishing a computer lab. Ivy, who runs the St. Hugh's computer lab, has offered him 10 used computers in good condition. In charge of the lab will be three directors: Dorian Hairwood, Dennis Jelalian and a 3rd, still to be identified, person. The lab will be for-profit.

 Joe McNeil (in charge of the community center) has told Dennis that no space is currently available to support this function. Karl remarked that the highest priority is to become a recognized group. Only then should one ask for space. Recognition is given by the City. One of the first questions the City will ask is whether there is an interest in a computer lab? So far Dennis has placed two ads in the News Review and has received no responses.

There was a discussion regarding the software and software licenses that would have to be purchased to support the Computer Lab. Karl recommended the use of free software, such as Linux and a suite of applications that can run on Linux that is compatible with standard Microsoft formats.  The use of this software for free software is only granted to non-profit organizations. Only if the computer-lab group becomes a recognized , non-profit, organization, do they not need to purchase software licenses. Next the subject of liability insurance was brought up (expensive!). In the end the question was raised whether it might be simpler for Dennis to use the word-processing computers available at the U. of Maryland, rather then go to the elaborate process of starting a computer lab.

Dennis took note of our concerns and will return with a renewed proposal.


*11. New software packages have been installed on the Greenbelt server (Karl Grotke)

Karl, working together with Margaret Zook and Dorian Winterfeld, has installed these packages:

- RPM (Redhead Package Management).  A program used by the Linux operating system to install software applications.

 - SSH (Secure SHell). This is an encryption package and replaces Telnet. Telnet has security problems (see 9b above), SSH solves these. Everything administrative from our computer to the server is to go through SSH.

- SCP (Secure CoPy). This replaces FTP and solves FTP's security problems (see 9b above).

All these packages are free.

Our users should be informed of the availability of these packages.

Next: Karl would like to see Mailing Lists and aliasese added to our server.

Peggy suggested that Karl write up a wish-list and bring it to our next meeting

In conclusion Karl mentioned the possibility of adding a GIAC "we-exist-join-us-flyer" to the GHI welcome package for new GHI members.


*12. The President closed the meeting at 9:20 p.m.



Respectfully submitted,

Leonie Penney, Secretary