ASP GAU Account
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ASP GAU Account & Supercomputing Access. Gabriele Pfister. NCAR’s S cientific C omputing D ivision SCD's goal is to enable the best atmospheric research in the world by providing and advancing high-performance computing technologies.

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ASP GAU Account


Supercomputing Access

Gabriele Pfister

NCAR’s Scientific Computing Division

SCD's goal is to enable the best atmospheric research in the world by providing and advancing high-performance computing technologies.

SCD offers computing, research datasets, data storage, networking, and data analysis tools to advance NCAR's scientific research agenda.


Computer Architectures (I)

SCD’s machines are UNIX-based parallel computing architectures

Production Supercomputing Systems run tasks such as large simulations or models that require massive computing and data-handling resources.


IBM Cluster 1600 running AIX


IBM e1350 cluster running Linux

Data Analysis and Visualization Systems support data preprocessing prior to a job run and data postprocessing after a run

Tempest (SGI Origin3800 running IRIX)

Computer Architectures (II)

Mass Storage System (MSS)

NCAR's Mass Storage System is a central, large-scale data archive that stores data used and generated by climate models and other programs executed on NCAR's compute servers.

On 21 July 2004,

NCAR's MSS surpassed

2 petabytes of data storage.

Some of the data stored on the MSS originate from field experiments and observations, however, the bulk of the data is generated by global climate-simulation models, mesoscale weather models, and other earth-science models that run on supercomputer.

  • ASP GAU Resources

  • A GAU (General Accounting Unit) is a measure for compute time on the supercomputers

  • ASP has a monthly allocation of 2000 GAUs

  • Access to these machines require

    • SCD login account

    • GAU account (e.g. contact Maura concerning the ASP account)

    • ssh environment

    • crypto card (for secure access)

  • GAUs: Use it or lose it - strategy

  • Resources are shared among ASP postdocs (and some graduate fellows)

  • Distribution is flexible and will be discussed regularly, e.g. monthly, either via meetings or e-mail discussions ([email protected])

Note: GAUs are also charged for storing files in the mass storage system (MSS) or file transfers from/to MSS to/from other machines

ASP GAU account

ASP GAU account number: 54042108 (also known as “project number”)

Needs to be specified in the batch scripts

ASP account number is NOT your default account number

Therefore: everybody needs a second (default) GAU account

(e.g. divisional GAU account)

University account - small request form for 1500 GAUs

These GAUs do not expire every month, one-time allocation

Example: IBM Job Script

# @ job_name = mz4.3.noaa_frc_xnox_RF_2

# @ job_type = parallel

# @ account_no = 54042108

# @ ja_report = yes

# @ output = $(job_name).out

# @ error = $(job_name).err

# @ wall_clock_limit = 2000

# @ node_usage = not_shared

# @ network.MPI = csss,not_shared,us

# @ node = 2

# @ total_tasks = 16

# @ class = com_ec32

Stand-by (sb)

Economy (ec)

Regular (rg)

Priority (pr)

32- or 8-processor nodes

How to check GAU Status and Usage?


CIT username and password for login

Information on SCD’s Machines

User Manuals for computing facilities and mass storage system

SCD’s Support and Consulting Services

SCD’s consulting group: possible to get help on the weekends

or in the evenings (email)

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 303 497 1278

SCD’s Daily Bulletin (machine downtimes, etc.)