SciNet News July 2011

July 5, 2011 in for_researchers, for_users, newsletter


  • Jul 11-13: HPCVL / Compute Canada Workshop July 2011

    Practical Parallel Programming With OpenMP and MPI HPCVL Training Room, 115-993 Princess St., Kingston, Ontario

    Schedule: Mon July 11, 2011: OpenMP Tue July 12, 2011: MPI Wed July 13, 2011: Hybrid Time: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm (EST)

    Lecturers: Hartmut Schmider and Gang Liu (HPCVL, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario)

    Also available via video conferencing at SciNet. Contact us if you want to participate remotely (, or see

  • Wed Jul 20, 12:00 – 13:00: Introduction to Linux for SHARCNET

    Speaker: Isaac Ye, HPTC Analyst

    An introductory seminar on Linux usage, aimed specifically at users new to the Linux operating system, and with an emphasis on usage typical to a user of the SHARCNET systems. Topics will include basic concepts related to the filesystem, shell usage and basic commands to help a new user be productive on SHARCNET clusters; key activities such as compilation, modules and the job scheduler will also be covered.

    Registration for this event is not necessary, just point your web browser at just before the talk.

  • Thu Aug 25, 12:00 noon: Intro to SciNet Fri Sep 9, 12:00 noon: Intro to SciNet (these are identical sessions)

    Learn how to use SciNet systems in approximately 90 minutes. Extremely useful for new users, but experienced users may still pick up some valuable pointers.

    More sessions may be given throughout the year depending on user interest, but only the first one (Aug 25) will feature pizza!

    Sign up on

  • Wed Sep 14, 12:00 noon: SNUG (SCINET USERS GROUP) MEETING

    • TechTalk by Jaime Pinto (SciNet) on “HPSS – SciNet’s storage capacity expansion”
    • User discussion
    • Pizza!

    Sign up on

  • Other SNUG meetings next term are scheduled on Oct 12, Nov 9 and Dec 14, and you can sign up on
  • More course announcements to come soon! Keep an eye on SciNet’s course web site


  • HPSS, the new tape-backed storage system that expands the current storage capacity of SciNet, has entered its pilot phase. This means that the installation is complete, and select users are trying out the system. HPSS will be one of the ways in which storage allocation will be implemented.
  • New IBM Power-7 cluster: The P7 cluster currently consists of 5 IBM Power 755 servers (at least 3 more servers to be added later this year). Each has four 8-core 3.3GHz Power7 CPUs and 128GB RAM, and features 4-way Simultaneous MultiThreading giving 128 threads per server. Linux is the operating system. Both the GCC and IBM compilers are installed, as well as POE and OpenMPI. LoadLeveler is used as the scheduler. Instruction on usage are on the wiki, but you will first have to ask us if you want access (
  • GPC: The Berkeley compiler for Unified Parallel C (UPC) has been installed as the module upc. The compiler command is ‘upcc’.
  • GPC: Bugs in the gnuplot module were fixed.
  • GPC: qhull support was added to octave.


(All new wiki content below is listed and linked on the main page:

  • The Acceptable Use Policy in the Essentials page
  • Slides and source code of the Parallel I/O session at HPCS 2011, given by one of our analysts.
  • A link to a 2009 INRIA Technical Report on existing linear algebra libraries for C++ was added to the Math section of the Tutorial page
  • Slides of Pierre de Buyl’s TechTalk on f2py: Fortran and Python
  • A lot of material on HPSS was added.


  • A SNUG meeting was held on Jun 8, with a TechTalk by Pierre de Buyl on “f2py (Fortran Python interfacing)
  • Jun 13-17: SciNet was involved in the technical sessions of HPCS2011 in Montreal, and many of us participated in the symposium (
  • May 30-Jun 3: The Ontario Summer School on HPC, jointly sponsored by SHARCNET, SciNet and HPCVL — your Ontario HPC consortia — was held at the Sheridan Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning in Trafalgar, Oakville, Ontario (
  • We had a couple of chiller failures.