Step 1: Create an Account
Before accessing any Zoo nodes either in-person or remotely, you must sign up for a Zoo account here: http://zoo.cs.yale.edu/accounts.html. Log in with your regular NetID and password. Optionally, you can then select your preferred shell and the classes you’re enrolled in. (You should update the class list every semester that you take any class that uses the Zoo, which covers most Computer Science courses.) Click submit, and your account should be created in around an hour. You’ll then receive an email with further information about accessing the Zoo.
Step 2: Log In
Go to the Zoo (at the 3rd floor of AKW), find an available machine, and log in on the console with your NetID and password.
To remotely log in to a Zoo node, you can use SSH (note that you cannot use Telnet).
Mac OSX comes with an SSH client by default. Open up a terminal window, type
and press Enter. Replace “NetID” with your actual NetID (e.g., “ssh email@example.com”). Type in your regular campus-wide NetID password when prompted.
Download a SSH client, such as PuTTY: http://www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~sgtatham/putty/. When you open PuTTY, you should see a screen that asks you to specify the basic options for your PuTTY session. In the “Host Name” box, type in
Make sure “SSH” is selected as the Connection type. Do not change the Port number. Click “Open,” and you should be prompted for your username and password. Use your campus-wide NetID and password to log in.
If all goes well, you should now be logged into a random zoo node! If you have a favorite node or animal (full list here: https://zoo.cs.yale.edu/newzoo/), you can log into that specific node by typing something like “zebra.zoo.cs.yale.edu” instead of “node.zoo.cs.yale.edu”.
There are also other ways to access the Zoo, such as by using FastX, as documented here: https://zoo.cs.yale.edu/classes/cs223/doc/FastX-Windows.html. For more information on the Zoo and Zoo rules/etiquette, check out the Zoo help pages: http://zoo.cs.yale.edu/help/.
Credits: Much of this information is taken from an email by Jim Faulkner (http://www.cs.yale.edu/homes/aspnes/pinewiki/HowToUseTheZooRemotely.html) and from the Zoo help pages (http://zoo.cs.yale.edu/help/).