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Changing the auto-timeout in my.wbs

In my.wbs the default behaviour is automatically to log out all users after 40 minutes of 'inactivity'.

With websites 'inactivity' means that information hasn't been sent to, or received from, the web server. Working very hard typing a long answer into my.wbs does not, unfortunately, count as 'activity' as no information is being sent or received.

We received many requests from users for us to add the ability to modify these settings. After careful consideration we decided that we could allow staff to modify these settings as our logs show the vast majority of staff access my.wbs from a non-shared computer. For students however our logs showed that the majority of students access my.wbs from shared computers, at WBS, the rest of the University or beyond (Internet cafes etc). As my.wbs holds private data such as private email addresses and student marks we have kept the automatic log out for students to minimise the risk of someone forgetting to log out. In this way we are operating like other websites that contain private information such as banking sites.

We do understand that for students who access from a personal computer this can be frustrating. Our recommendation when producing long posts is that students copy content to the clipboard before submitting (Ctrl A to select all and then Ctrl C to copy) or create the content in a word processor and then copy and paste across. That said, I am a student at WBS as well and, of course, I don't actually do this myself and get furious when my hard work is lost...


Staff wishing to change the automatic timeout should:

  1. Log into my.wbs
  2. Select My Admin (left menu) > Profile
  3. Select your desired option in the 'Set Timeout' section
  4. Click the TEST button which checks whether your browser will allow these settings to work
  5. Click 'Save my profile' at the bottom of the page