Rules-Computing Services - Carnegie Mellon University

CMUname Selection Rules

Following are the rules to consider when selecting a CMUname.

  1. If your CMUname choice matches one entry uniquely, no one but that person can select it as their CMUname. Otherwise, an address that had been routing mail to a user would suddenly stop working.
    Jane Smithenheimer is the only match for "smithenheimer" at Thus, only Jane can choose "smithenheimer" as her CMUname.
  2. If a CMUname choice matches one (and only one) organizational user ID, only the person with the matching organizational user ID may choose that CMUname.
    Joe Charger of the ECE department has the organizational user ID of, and no on else has the user ID "charger". Thus, only Joe may choose "charger" as his CMUname.
  3. If a CMUname choice matches two or more organizational user IDs, then no one is able to choose that CMUname without mutual agreement between individuals and organizations. If you find yourself in this situation, get permission from the other user who matches your desired CMUname, and send it to
  4. Last names in the CMU.EDU database that do not match organizational User IDs can only be chosen by people with that last name on a first-come first-served basis.
    There are no organizational user IDs of "smith"; the first person whose last name is Smith who chooses that as a CMUname will receive it.
  5. If a CMUname choice does not match a user ID, last name, or unacceptable name (see the last selection rule), that CMUname choice is available to anyone on a first-come first-served basis.
  6. A CMUname can contain up to 35 characters, limited to alphanumerics, and must start with a letter.
  7. Computing Services reserves the right to remove inappropriate or misrepresentative CMUname selections.

You will be notified immediately if you are unable to have the CMUname you choose for any of these reasons, and will be asked to make another selection.

Last Updated: 10/18/07