This guide is for users new to CHPC. It is intended to provide some assistance in getting started, but is not meant to replace any of our other services. It is limited to the policies and use of our High Performance Computing systems and does not address the other areas which are supported by CHPC (desktop support, networking, digital media etc.) We are interested in improving our documentation and in assisting you in your research. Please send any comments or feedback on this guide to issues@chpc.utah.edu.

When you applied for your account you signed and agreed to the following:

In obtaining this account I agree to use the Center for High Performance Computing resources solely for the purposes connected with my University of Utah affiliation and agree not to allow my access to be used in a manner which could permit unauthorized use of the computer. During the use of this account, certain proprietary software may be made available. Availability of said software is for my use only and may not be copied to any other machine(s) or made available to any other person(s).

CHPC is an important but limited resource for University of Utah community. It is CHPC's responsibility to protect these facilities and safeguard their proper use. Because we cannot do this job alone, we depend on your assistance. Responsible use of the system and cooperation on your part helps us maximize availability for you and other researchers.

If CHPC determines that you have not used the CHPC resources in an appropriate fashion, you could lose your account, your current allocation and your ability to qualify for future allocations.

CHPC had several security breaches during the 2004 calendar year and our policy is to take reasonable measures to insure the security of our systems. We also have a policy of maintaining accessibility and ease of use. These two philosophies are sometimes at odds with each other. Our goal is to strike a balance between the two.

We encourage our users to maintain safe passwords, not share their passwords and will lock passwords we find too easy to crack. Please see our security and password policy for details. With our most recent breach in November of 2004 we do not allow access to the systems we maintain via SSH keys.

The first step is to submit a request to CHPC for an account on our systems. You must first fill out the account application form and have it signed by your faculty advisor or PI. We still require hardcopy signatures, so please fill out the online form, print it, sign it, have your advisor sign it and send it into CHPC. You can fax it to (801) 585-5366.

When you receive your HPC account you are given access to all of the High Performance Computing Platforms supported by CHPC. They are available through the ssh (secure shell) utility. We allow only protocol 2 to access our systems and do not allow "ssh keys" for security reasons.

The HPC systems currently supported are:

  • Kings Peak Cluster:
    • ssh kingspeak.chpc.utah.edu
  • Ember Cluster:
    • ssh ember.chpc.utah.edu

Your password for all Unix systems and for samba/cifs mounts of fileservers maintained by CHPC is your campus CIS password. Please go to https://gate.acs.utah.edu/ to change your password.

Windows OS computers that are joined to the CHPC Active Directory (chpc.ad.utah.edu), your password is also maintained via CIS (https://gate.acs.utah.edu/). If your Windows computer is NOT joined to the AD, then your password is maintained locally with that machine (local account). Users of CHPC administrated systems, can email issues@chpc.utah.edu for assistance.

CHPC provides home directory space which is NFS mounted on all of the HPC systems. This filesystem is not backed up. Users are responsible for moving important data to a more permanent location such as their home department fileserver.

CHPC also provides several layers of scratch on the various HPC platforms we support. Please see the CHPC Disk Usage Policy.

CHPC awards allocations on our systems based on proposals submitted to a review committee. Research groups must submit requests for allocations. Please see the CHPC Accounts and Allocations Policy for detailed information.

Each of the HPC platform has a web based User's Guide which should help you get going on that system. They are:

If after going through these guides and examples you find you are still having difficulty getting going, please contact CHPC by sending a message to issues@chpc.utah.edu stating that you wish to meet with a consultant for some assistance.

All of our documentation is available on the Web (including a FAQ - Frequesntly Asked Questions) which you may browse through it by going to CHPC Documentation.

If you have a question or run into problems, please contact the CHPC Help Desk.

The best way is by sending email to issues@chpc.utah.edu and stating your question or problem. Please provide as much detail as possible, including your name and contact information, which system you're having trouble with, when the problem occurred and any job numbers, scripts or error messages which apply to the problem.

The CHPC Presentation Series is presented every Fall and again in the Spring. These presentations are designed to help you learn about CHPC, parallel programming, some of the specialized software CHPC supports and other topics we think might assist you in your research. The link to the presentations (above) also has links to the latest slides for the talks along with abstracts about each presentation. Please let us know if you have ideas for presentations you would like added to our series.

We ask that you acknowledge CHPC support on any published work supported by CHPC facilities or staff. Please see our Acknowledging CHPC Policy.

The next thing to do when you're ready to go is to actually run a job through our batch system. There are a lot of pieces to this, so we've put together a guide on to help you:HPC Basics - Hello World MPI . Try your hand at this and if you run into problems or have any questions, just send us a note to issues@chpc.utah.edu and we'll be happy to help you out.