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The newsletter of the SIE de Investigación y Enseñanza N. 34 - January/February 2010

SICminar on VPN, 27 January 2010

This Wednesday, at 12.30 in the Aula, Diego Serra (SIC) will be giving a SICminar about the VPN at the IAC. It will be a hands-on talk, so bring your own laptop (with Java and Thunderbird installed) to learn and try yourself all about what the VPN can do. Diego will go through all the menus and options, describe the "Network Connect", show us how to configure the email reader to access the IAC email server through the VPN, and how to use the "meeting" facility. Last, he will talk about how to run licensed software packages (IDL, Mathematica, etc.) via VPN. Whether you are a seasoned VPN user or don't even know what VPN stands for, this is a seminar you cannot afford to miss!

New year's resolution: I'll do backups, I'll do backups...

Do you make regular and efficient backups of all your important data? OK, no need to blush. Just make sure you put aside one hour of your time to learn how to use rdiff-backup, so that you can have regular incremental backups. Using rdiff-backup is really easy, and it will allow you to recover the last (or a previous) version of any of the files you care about. If there is enough interest (let us know by e-mail), we could run a SIEminar about it.

Visualization software in parallel, anyone?

As part of a student project, we built a small visualization cluster (4 nodes, 16 CPUs). The visualization software used was ParaView, and since its documentation didn't seem to have a step-by-step guide on how to do it, we put together a SIEpedia article on how to build it. If your visualization needs are big, get in touch with us to study whether a similar solution could be suitable for you.

Supercomputing hall of fames (second semester 2009)

As it is becoming our habit, we have published the usage statistics of the Supercomputing resources at the IAC for the second semester of 2009. In total, 1084413.57 CPU hours were delivered during this period (roughly "equivalent" to 123.79 years in just one CPU). By resource, Condor delivered 610246.2 CPU hours, LaPalma 336363.90 and Chimera 137803.47. Full details of the breakdown by users can be found at the SIE Forum for Condor, LaPalma and Chimera. If you want a piece of this pie and don't know how to start, just let us know.

If you are leaving the IAC don't forget to bring along your e-mails...

Some users have asked how they can migrate all their existing mail at the IAC servers to another provider (i.e. Gmail) when leaving the IAC. This is actually quite easy and it just involves setting up two IMAP accounts in your mail reader: one for the IAC server and another one for Gmail. Once this is done, you just have to select the messages you want to transfer and move them to the other account (dates, etc. will be kept, though not the folder structure). If you have many folders this can be quite tiresome, so we would recommend using (just for the purpose of migrating, later you can go to your usual software) a mail reader that gives you a "view" of ALL your messages (for instance Opera Mail), in which case you can see all your messages in one virtual folder and move them all to Gmail without any effort.

Second Practical Course of the Spanish Virtual Observatory - Reminder!

We remind all that the "Second Practical Course of the Spanish Virtual Observatory", a workshop on using Virtual Observatory tools, will take place here at the IAC on 4-5 March 2010. Full details can be found at the Segundo Curso Práctico de la Red Temática SVO page. If you wish to register, hurry up: the deadline is Friday 19 February 2010.
SIE de Investigación y Enseñanza :: N. 34 - January/February 2010 - Contact: