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The newsletter of the SIE de Investigación y Enseñanza N. 12 - October 2006

SIEminar: "Web pages made easy (for busy people)", Wednesday 25 October 12.30, by Jorge A Pérez

These days you are nobody if you are not in the Internet. People use the web to publish their work or express their opinions and also as a coordination tool in their working groups. If you have thought about making a personal or research group web page and you don't know how, the SIEminar of this month is just for you. Jorge will show us how to quickly and easily write and publish web pages with little knowledge of HTML. The full abstract in Spanish can be found in the SIE's Talks and Courses Web page.

Chimera, the new 64 bits Beowulf cluster, open in beta

The new 64 bits Beowulf cluster (Chimera), is now open in beta, and is fast: we obtained 151.9 GFlops (in June 2002 we would have made it into the Top500 list) with the Linpack benchmark (with Beoiac we obtained 78.47 GFlops). Most of the stuff is already there, but during the coming weeks we'll continue tweaking it, installing new libraries, adding documentation, performing benchmarks, etc. The cluster has a similar look and feel to the old Beoiac, but it has some important improvements: the compute nodes have 64 bits (EM64T) processors and a total of 64GB RAM, and the storage space has been improved greatly, with a bigger /home, a bigger /scratch, and a big disk of 3.9TB using PVFS2 for very fast parallel write/reads to disk. If you want more information (how to get an account, how to submit jobs, etc.) please check the Chimera webpage.

Installation of LIRISDR in IRAF

LIRISDR, the IRAF package developed developed in-house by Jose Acosta and Miguel Charcos to reduce LIRIS data, has been added to the current IRAF installation for Linux. To use it, load first the iactasks package. LIRISDR has been presented in the June SIEminar: Como reducir datos infrarrojos y no morir en el intento, and its usage is described in the User's Guide to LIRIS Data Reduction. LIRISDR is still under development. Users experiencing problems or having doubts or questions may cautiously and respectfully approach Jose for help; comments and suggestions for improvement will be much appreciated. Many thanks, Jose, for developing this very useful package and making it available to the whole IAC community!

Hardware purchases

This year the deadline for buying computing material came earlier than the previous years, and we duly complied. The most important purchases the SIE has done are:
  • 25 standard PCs, which will mainly replace aging Sun Workstations. As already announced by the SIC, support to Sun Solaris machines and software is going to be discontinued.
  • 15 17-inch flat screens. Most of them will replace the tube monitors in the "Sala de Usuarios", allowing its users more desk space and a more comfortable environment.
  • 1 MacBookPro laptop, to replace SIE's five+ years old Toshiba laptop.
  • 1 64-bit PC with Virtual Technology enabled, to be used as a Virtual Cluster where to develop, install and test new software or settings before committing them to beoiac and chimera.

Installing a web server in your computer

If you are developing a web application using CGIs or a server-side programming language, you may need a test server to run your scripts. The most popular Web Platform is one called LAMP, a successful combination of an Apache Server with PHP and a MySQL database running in a Linux machine ( Linux+Apache+MySQL+PHP) used also here at the IAC. The new HowTo in our SIEpedia shows you step-by-step how to make a local installation of a LAMP system in your computer.
SIE de Investigación y Enseñanza :: N. 12 - October 2006 - Contact: