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Accessing ARCHIE-WeSt

User accounts

To access the service, users must already have a user account on ARCHIE-WeSt, which is accessible using a DS User ID (DS_User_ID) and password issued by the University of Strathclyde. ARCHIE-WeSt accounts are created upon the successful completion of a Project Application Form submitted by the project Principal Investigator. Please refer to the "Request Time" page for further details.

Users can log into the cluster from any network using Secure Shell (SSH). It is also possible to obtain terminal access the cluster from Windows using MobaXterm and a Graphical Desktop session can be obtained from all platforms using the Thinlinc Remote Desktop client for a GUI session.

User Notifications

Every time a user opens a terminal on ARCHIE-WeSt, a summary of the user's projects and disk usage is displayed. This allows the user to conveniently monitor usage and plan Project Extension Applications as required to ensure uninterrupted access.

Connecting to ARCHIE-WeSt

ARCHIE-WeSt has four login nodes: archie-w, archie-e, archie-s and archie-t. Each login node is visulaization capable and has the following specification:

  • 40 2.0GHz Intel Xeon cores (2 x Intel Xeon Gold 6138 CPU's)
  • 768 GB RAM
  • An onboard NVidia Quadro P4000 graphics card

Unacceptable use of login nodes

Full-scale calculations are not permitted on the login nodes and may be terminated immediately by the system administrators. Login nodes should only be used for job preparation, testing, job submission, post processing, visualization and data transfer.

Logging into ARCHIE-WeSt requires a DS User ID (DS_User_ID) and password issued the University of Strathclyde.

Terminal Access (ssh) from Linux/Mac

To login to ARCHIE-WeSt via ssh (e.g. from Linux/Mac), use the following command:

ssh -X DS_User_ID@login.hpc.strath.ac.uk

archie-login will be re-directed to one of the following login nodes:

archie-w.hpc.strath.ac.uk (130.159.75.221)
archie-e.hpc.strath.ac.uk (130.159.75.222)
archie-s.hpc.strath.ac.uk (130.159.75.223)
archie-t.hpc.strath.ac.uk (130.159.75.224)

Note: ssh -X

Supplying -X to the ssh command is optional and will tunnel X windows traffic back to your desktop so that you can display programs graphically.

Once you have logged in, terminal should look similar to:

Terminal after logging in

A table summarizing project(s) usage and disk usage is displayed. The table is updated every morning at 3am. If you exceed your soft quota the time required for you to get back under your soft quota allocation will appear. Core Hour usage is calculated basing on completed jobs.

Info

Projects you are assigned to will only be listed once core-hours have been used against that project-ID.

Terminal Access (ssh) from Windows

If logging on from a Windows desktop, download MobaXterm which is a SSH & SFTP (file transfer) client for Windows. The MobaXterm Graphical User Interface is shown below:

MobaXterm Security Settings

For security reasons, the following should be disabled:
Click on Settings -> X11 tab -> Change X11 remote access to "disabled"

Moba Xterm start window

You can create a saved SSH session which you simply click on in order to login to ARCHIE.

Moba Xterm 'Start Local Terminal'

Type here an usual ssh command providing ARCHIE-WeSt DS_user_ID and the server address:

ssh -X DS_user_ID@login.hpc.strath.ac.uk

ssh command

You will be asked for the password associated with your DS_user_ID

username verivication

Saving password is not the best idea. Please choose "NO" button.

don't save password

Now you are logged in. A table summarizing project(s) usage and disk usage is displayed. The table is updated every morning at 3am. If you exceed your soft quota the time required for you to get back under your soft quota allocation will appear. Core Hour usage is calculated basing on completed jobs.

MobaXterm login page

Info

MobaXterm will redirect you to the least busy login node. Projects you are assigned to will only be listed once core-hours have been used against that project-ID.

You can create a saved SSH session which you simply click on in order to login to ARCHIE. After opening MobaXterm click on the "Sessions" button (or "Sessions" menu and choose "New Session":

New Session

Then a new session setting window will appear:

New Session Window

Click on SSH icon to have access to more options

SSH options

Now provide the host name login.hpc.strath.ac.uk and your DS_usrer_ID as before.

Advanced SSH

Before accepting the session you might wish to set up "Advanced SSH Settings". It is recommended that you enable "X11", "Compression" and "Display SSH Browser" for transferring files.

Fill advances SSH settings Now you might accept the session by pressing "OK" button.

Graphical Desktop Session

A graphical desktop session can be obtained using the ThinLinc remote desktop client (Windows/Linux/Mac).Once installed:

ThinLinc login window

provide the server name along with your DS_user_ID and password. The server address is as before:

thinlinc.hpc.strath.ac.uk

You can "suspend" the session by simply closing the window via the "X" on the top LH corner. When you reconnect, you will resume the suspended sessions, however, if you have no applications running, we recommend that you log out.

Idle ThinLinc Sessions

Idle sessions will terminate after three weeks.

Thinlinc Options

Pressing F8 within the desktop session will give you access to the ThinLinc client options.

Note

The terminal lookout is explained above, for details see the Section "Terminal Access (ssh) From Linux/Mac" (right panel).

Visualization

Each login node has a NVidia Quadro P4000 graphics card installed, therefore it can serve as a powerful visualization server. This means that data can be pre-processed or post-processed remotely on ARCHIE-WeSt, instead of transfering data to the user's desktop which can be time consuming.

To ensure the remote graphic card is used all GUI commands should be preceded by vglrun.

Example

The command:

vmd

opens the VMD (Visual Molecular Dynamics) GUI, however by default it will attempt to use graphics card in the user's

local workstation for all graphics processing and performance will be poor.

However the command:

    vglrun vmd

also opens VMD GUI, except in this case the remote NVidia Quadro P4000 graphics card will be used allowing for real-time visualisation to be undertaken with no discernable latency.