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Let's talk about Linux and High Performance Computing

On November 15th, our HPC team organised an event called “Let’s talk about Linux and HPC”, which focused on giving an overview of HPC at QMUL. The conference was open to the public and published on Eventbrite.

Approximately 30 people were in attendance between organisers and online or onsite attendees that came to our 2-hour event in the Engineering building at the Mile End campus. During the conference, attendees shared opinions, thoughts and suggestions for future workshops dealing with Linux, Ubuntu and setting up scripts in more detail. They were able to express themselves with the help of mentimeter.

Agenda and speakers

The first part of the agenda consisted of three talks. It started by Thomas King who is an Assistant Director at QMUL, he spoke about What and Why you should use HPC at QMUL, he presented the cluster service we offer in Apocrita and how to access and manage it. It was followed by Julita Inca who presented on how to submit a cluster job script, and lastly, Simon Butcher spoke about the applications that can be used in Apocrita.

After the coffee break, Vitaly Kukchenkov, an administrator of Apocrita for more than 4 years, shared his knowledge about applying the best practices in the cluster. Peter Childs described the challenges and solutions related to the backup procedure in Apocrita, how to use shared and personal storage. Finally, Giles Greenway, the Research Software Engineer team leader, showed us how to assign cores accordingly to the nature of an application developed in Python.

The last part of the talk was given by two members of the Research Software Engineer team, Samantha Lawson and Sherman Lo. Samantha explained how to run a job interactively by using OnDemand. She kindly provided an example using the application R and she concluded with statistics that are very useful for a researcher. Sherman Lo gave us an energetic introduction to MPI and GPUs, he explained how a computer uses cores and options in case we need more resources.

Our HPC team @ QMUL

Our team of around 20 people are in charge of administration of the Apocrita cluster, backup and storage, supporting modules and applications in Apocrita such as On Demand, Python, MPI and many other CUDA configurations.

The Group Photo

We are grateful for our attendees who were enthusiastic and curious. We had the chance to have discussions during the coffee break. Our bee mascots are looking forward to the next workshop.

You might want to see the videos of the event.