Seedcorn Time

Access to DiRAC is co-ordinated by The STFC’s DiRAC Resource Allocation Committee, which puts out an annual Call for Proposals to request time for a Full Project Allocation and also operates a Seedcorn Time programme.

Seedcorn Time Programme

For researchers who would like to try the DiRAC resources, get a feel for HPC, test codes, benchmark or see what the DiRAC resources can do for you before making a full application for resources, an application can be made for seedcorn time.

Existing users may also apply for seedcorn allocations to enable code development/testing on a service which is not currently part of their project allocation.

You can apply for seedcorn time at any time.

Seedcorn Application

The maximum allocation of seedcorn time will be 50,000 x86 core hours or 1,000 GPU hours or 1,000 KNL node hours. Your hours can be used at any time within three months from the date it is allocated.

An overview of the DiRAC hardware resources can be found here.

If you would like to apply please fill in this simple “Seedcorn” Application Form and send it to DIRACSEEDCORN@jiscmail.ac.uk.

You will need to provide your personal details, the codes that you intend to run and what libraries and tools are required for you to run the code, if known. We also would like to know what you intend to achieve with your allocation and of course which of the four DiRAC systems you would like to use.

You should be able to complete the form in around 15 minutes.

The decision process for Seedcorn applications is streamlined and should take no more that 1 week.

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Research Symposium

SuperComputing Wales Research Symposium 2018
13th September
Swansea University

The Swansea Academy of Advanced Computing (SA2C) are hosting this event to bring together the Supercomputing Wales community and give users a forum to showcase their research to the wider HPC community and network with other supercomputing specialists.

Whilst primarily aimed at the Swansea community, this event is open to all DiRAC HPC users who would like to present their research. The event will include research talks, a poster session, and opportunities for discussion about HPC, the Supercomputing Wales project and their SUNBIRD machine.

SAC2 facilitates Swansea researchers in using HPC technologies by enabling access to a HPC computing platform and Research Software Engineers (RSEs) to assist in its use. These resources are funded via the Supercomputing Wales project (SCW).

Registration for this event is via Eventbrite and can be accessed here. The Eventbrite page also has a Preliminary Agenda for the day, which will be updated closer to the event. Accomodation booking on the University Campus is available through Swansea’s DiRAC Day website.


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Hackathon

NVidia Hackathon
9th, 10th & 11th September
Swansea University

Call for Team Applications

We are pleased to announce that Nvidia have generously agreed to sponsor a 3-day GPU hackathon in Swansea prior to DiRAC Day 2018. This team event will provide the DiRAC community with the opportunity to explore the potential for GPUs in supporting their science.

The Hackathon is open to all DiRAC HPC users and we expect to be able to offer places to 5 or 6 teams of between 3 and 5 people each. Over the three days, we hope that several major DiRAC science codes will be ported to GPUs and that the teams who attend will gain the skills to assist other DiRAC researchers to port additional codes in the future. This is part of our on-going work to ensure that DiRAC provides the most appropriate hardware for your science and the hackathon will help provide input to discussions on the design of future DiRAC systems.

No prior experience of GPU programming is required – there will be online training material in advance of the hackathon itself to provide an introduction. Teams of 3-5 people can apply with 1 or 2 codes to be worked on. It’s important that all those who attend are familiar with the code that their team will be working on.

Download the Application Form and return it to the DiRAC Project Office by the 23rd July 2018. We will contact all applicants with the results in early August.

Accomodation booking is available through Swansea University’s DiRAC Day website. Some funding for a small number of students to help with accomodation may be available and if you or your team members would like to apply for this, please indicate numbers on your Application Form at Q11.

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Essentials Test

Essentials Level Test

The test is taken online and you can use the web, ‘man’ pages and any other resources you would usually use when programming. The questions are mostly independent and you can answer them in any order.

You will need to clone a git repository and full instructions can be found either here or through the GitHub icon in the top right-hand corner of our webpages.

The test takes around 90 minutes from when you enter your name, email and affiliation.

Please make sure you have read our Data Privacy Policy before you take the test.

When you’re ready, click on the link below….

Take the test here


Elibibility, Grading & Results

The test is mandatory for those who are studying for advanced degrees, such as M.Sc. and Ph.D., and those employed as Post-Doctoral Research Assistants/Associates who have less than two years HPC experience.

The Test is graded as follows:

  • 60% and above: Pass: The test was completed successfully
  • Up to 60%: Fail: You will have three months to re-take the test from the date of receiving your results.

The 2018/19 test round was launched at the beginning of October 2018 and closes on January 11th 2019 – all elegible users should aim to complete it by that date. Results will be emailed to you at the end of February 2019.

If you have not taken/passed the test by the deadline we will contact you and your supervisor to discuss your case. At this point we will be able to arrange further assistance for you so you can pass the test and continue to use DiRAC resources in your research.


Feedback

During the registration process we asked you to complete a small number of multiple-choice questions designed to assess your starting skill-level in the various areas where we provide training.

At the end of the Essentials Level test, we have asked these questions again and it would be very useful to us if you could re-assess that skill-level in the light of any training you have taken and tell us how you think your skill-set has changed. The questions will only take a couple of minutes to answer.


Data Privacy

We use the information from these pre- and post-training surveys to help us better understand the needs of our user community and to identify areas where we can improve and more closely target our training offering to those needs. Our aim is to continually develop and innovate DiRAC’s training offering as those needs evolve.

The information you give will not be shared with anyone outside our small training team and we will never share your personal contact information with any external organisation. Once matched-up, your responses to the pre- and post-training surveys are fully anonymised before any analysis is undertaken.

To read more about how we handle your data please take a look at our Data Privacy Policy.


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Data Privacy

Data Privacy at DiRAC

At DiRAC we are completely committed to respecting and protecting your data whilst it is in our care. We have strict procedures in place to protect your personal data when you give it to us and we store all your data on UK-based secure servers.


What information do we collect?

You provide some of the information yourself – to register for a training account and the Essentials Level test you need to give us your personal contact details:

  • name;
  • email address;
  • afflilitation.

We collect some information automatically:

  • technical information, like the Internet Protocol (IP) address used to connect your computer to the internet and your unique identifier;
  • information about your visit, including the URL clickstream to, through and from our training site, pages you viewed and length of visits to certain pages.

What do we do with your information?

We use the information you provide to improve the DiRAC training experience for you and for everyone. That includes:

  • notifying you about things you have asked as about, such as internal or external training opportunities and events that might be useful to you;
  • notifying you of test results;
  • getting in touch if we need to tell you about something, like a change to our policies;
  • using the technical information about your visit to iterate and adjust our training offering (by looking at things like which pages are most popular compared to those which receive very little traffic etc..)

Information we receive that is not classified as personal data, such as that from the pre- and post-training surveys is shared only internally with our small training team and used solely to improve our training offering. For example, once your pre- and post-training survey responses have been matched up, any personal information that could identify you is removed or changed before any analysis is carried out.


Do we share your information with other organisations?

  • we only use your information to improve your experience. We do not share your information with any external organisations unless you give us your permission to share it, for example, with other training organisations or HPC-Special Interest Groups.

In exceptional circumstances, we might share your information without your permission if we reasonably believe you might be breaking the law, for example using hate speech on one of our forums, and such disclosure is allowed under the relevant laws, including the data protection law.


How long do we keep your information?

  • we will only hold your personal contact information for a period of three years from the date you give it to us, for example when you register for either a training account or for the Essentials Level test. While your information is with us, it is stored on UK-based secure servers;
  • we may close your account if you havnt used it in a long time. We’ll always send you an email to tell you that we plan to do this before we delete anything.

You will always be asked to consent to us storing your data, and you can withdraw that consent, or request that your data is deleted at any time by emailing DiRAC Support.


Keep your login credentials secure. If you have any reason to suspect these have been compromised, you should either Contact Us or change them immediately.


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Essentials Content

Essentials Level Course Content

The DiRAC Essentials Level Training (Formerly the Driving Licence), is a basic introduction to the principles of HPC and the tools needed to work on an HPC system. The training will help you to develop the skills required to meet your research and user needs and allow you to utilise DiRAC’s HPC systems effectively. The course focuses on the core skills, from basic connection to a system, through to laying the foundation for developing robust, high quality code.

Course Content


Essentials Level Test

The Essentials Level training culminates in a short on-line test – the training material here covers all aspects of HPC competency that are included in the test. The test is mandatory for those who are studying for advanced degrees, such as M.Sc. and Ph.D., and those employed as Post-Doctoral Research Assistants/Associates who have less than two years HPC experience.

For information on the test and how to sign-up for it, take a look at our dedicated Test Page.


The DiRAC Essentials Level Training has been developed with support of The Software Sustainability Institute and Software Carpentry.

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Restricted

Test content…

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Is this a good quiz?

I thought it was rather nice...

We don't need more complicated features right?

This should suffice...

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Core IT Technologies Workshop

This one-day workshop on Core IT Technologies for Research Computing will explore how to use new technologies to innovate and create new services. It is being held at University College London on 26th April 2018.

You can register for the event using this link and a full set of slides will be available here after the event.


Workshop on Core Technologies for Research Computing
26th April 2018

Description

Are you struggling to understand how to use new technologies to innovate and create new services? So that we can understand principles and detailed device characteristics a one day a workshop is being held at UCL to tackle these issues.

The workshop is aimed at:

  • System managers and system administrators
  • systems designers
  • academic staff
  • Data Intensive Science PhD students
  • Research Software Engineers

The main outputs will be

  • an understanding (and refreshment) of data movement principles and issues intra-PU to internet
  • How principles are applied to real systems
  • A briefing on the latest technologies
  • Networking and further discussions/followups

The workshop is not designed to replace local briefings of those of national events, but rather to develop the praxis of designing, delivering and running these types of systems so that as many people as possible are able to use principles and community knowledge to innovate in their respective areas.

Programme

Organiser: Dr Jeremy Yates
Time: 10.00am – 16.00pm

1000-1030 Coffee

1030-1130 Introduction to Principles of Data Movement in Computer Systems – just what is a computer system?

1130-1230 An Example of Data Intensive Systems – the Cambridge Service for Data Driven Discovery and an introduction to Data Hardware

1230-1315 Lunch

1315-1345 Examples of Industrial Applications of these Technologies

1345-1430 The Interconnect – Connecting Nodes to Nodes, Nodes to Data and Data to Data

1430-1500 The Processing Units – GPUs

1500-1530 The Processing Units – Power

1530-1600 The Processing Units – Arm

1600 Refreshments

Location

Room G22, Pearson Building (North East Entrance), UCL, Gower Street, London WC1E 6BT.

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10th Call Allocations

After each Call has been concluded we publish the compute time allocated to each project, in terms of CPU-Mhours on the DiRAC Resource on which the calculations are to be run, as well as the Storage Space [TB] allocated. In DiRAC we have three compute services and due to the different architectures on each service, the CPU-Mhours awarded to projects using different services may not be directly comprable.

For more information please email the Project Office

Table 1: Time Allocations from the 10th Resource Allocation Committee Call for Proposals.

Data Intensive @Cambridge Data Intensive @Leicester Memory Intensive @Durham DiRAC @Edinburgh
Application ID Project ID Project Title Principal Investigator GPU (khrs) KNL (khrs) Skylake (Mhrs) CPU (Mhrs) MI CPU (Mhrs) Cosma5/6 (Mhrs) CPU (Mhrs)
ACTP138 dp015 High perfromance computing support for Exeter Astrophysics Prof Bate, Matthew 90.00 0.03 14.29 7.00
ACTP139 Turbulence, Shocks and Dissipation in Space Plasmas Prof Burgess, David 6.43
ACTP140 dp047 DISCSIM: The formation and evolution of planets in the era of ALMA Prof Clarke, Cathy 299.15 2.14
ACTP141 Simba: New cosmological simulations to study galaxy-black hole co-evolution Prof Dave, Romeel 9.00
ACTP143 dp005 Theoretical Astrophysics at Leicester Dr Alexander, Richard 8.16
ACTP144 dp004 Virgo Consortium Prof Frenk, Carlos 42.00 5.00
ACTP145 dp040 Stellar hydrodynamics, evolution and nucleosynthesis (SHEN) Dr Hirschi, Raphael 2.56 7.00
ACTP146 Photoevaporation and properties of the circumstellar environment Dr Owen, James 4.07
ACTP147 Engineering Dwarfs at Galaxy Formation’s Edge Prof Read, Justin 4.29
ACTP149 dp079 Understanding the Milky Way and disc galaxies with Gaia Dr Schoenrich, Ralph 3.75 1.32
ACTP150 dp002 Cosmos Consortium: Unveiling the Structure of the Universe Prof Shellard, E. Paul 117.17 10.55
ACTP151 dp016 Modelling galaxy baryon physics: from cosmological to sub-galactic scales Prof. Slyz, Adrianne 25.71 5.20
ACSP152 The nature of wave-particle diffusion in Earth’s Outer Radiation Belt Dr Allanson, Oliver 0.28
ACSP154 UNITY: Multi-wavelength simulations of relativistic cosmology Dr Bull, Philip 0.29
ACSP155 Modelling of neutrino masses in the Dark Engery Spectroscopic Instrument Dr Font-Ribera, Andreu 0.46
ACSP156 Resolving Self-Gravitating Protstellar Disc Evolution in a Star Forming Environment Dr Forgan, Duncan 0.75
ACSP161 Impact of Reionization on the Intergalactic Medium Dr Onorbe, Jose 1.25
ACSP162 dp078 Multi-band Galaxy Shape Catalogues from DES Year 3 using im3shape Dr Rollins, Richard 1.79
ACSP163 dp033 Simulating Radiative Transfer in Supernovae Dr Sim, Stuart 0.36
PPTM165 dp006 Extreme QCD: Quantifying the QCD Phase Diagram II Prof Allton, Chris 33.85
PPTM166 dp064 First principle predictions of large nuclei and!nucleonic matter Dr Barbieri, Carlo 13.71
PPMT167 dp019 High Precision QCD (computing resources for the hPQCD collaboration) Prof Davies, Christine 351.50 22.50
PPMT168 dp007 Hadron physics of up, down and strange quarks Dr Roger Horsley 20.15
PPMT169 dp008 UKQCD–DWF: physics with dynamical chiral quarks Dr Juettner, Andreas 100.31
PPSP170 Numerical methods for high-order perturbative calculations Prof Del Debbio, Luigi 150.00
PPSP171 Signature of compositness of the LHC Dr Drach, Vincent 5.00
PPSP172 Lattice Holographic Cosmology Dr Portelli, Antonin 20.00

Table 2: Work/Scratch Storage Space from the 10th Resource Allocation Committee Call for Proposals

Data Intensive @Cambridge Data Intensive @Leicester Memory Intensive @Durham DiRAC @Edinburgh
Application ID Project ID Project Title Principal Investigator data (TB) data (TB) data (TB) data (TB)
ACTP138 dp015 High perfromance computing support for Exeter Astrophysics Prof Bate, Matthew 10.00 6.80 1.80
ACTP139 Turbulence, Shocks and Dissipation in Space Plasmas Prof Burgess, David 2.38
ACTP140 dp047 DISCSIM: The formation and evolution of planets in the era of ALMA Prof Clarke, Cathy 1.79 1.79
ACTP141 Simba: New cosmological simulations to study galaxy-black hole co-evolution Prof Dave, Romeel 20.00
ACTP143 dp005 Theoretical Astrophysics at Leicester Dr Alexander, Richard 83.84
ACTP144 dp004 Virgo Consortium Prof Frenk, Carlos 168.00
ACTP145 dp040 Stellar hydrodynamics, evolution and nucleosynthesis (SHEN) Dr Hirschi, Raphael 4.27 10.00
ACTP146 Photoevaporation and properties of the circumstellar environment Dr Owen, James 7.14
ACTP147 Engineering Dwarfs at Galaxy Formation’s Edge Prof Read, Justin 7.14
ACTP149 dp079 Understanding the Milky Way and disc galaxies with Gaia Dr Schoenrich, Ralph 5.00 0.71
ACTP150 dp002 Cosmos Consortium: Unveiling the Structure of the Universe Prof Shellard, E. Paul 9.58 41.07
ACTP151 dp016 Modelling galaxy baryon physics: from cosmological to sub-galactic scales Prof. Slyz, Adrianne 109.42 40.00
ACSP152 The nature of wave-particle diffusion in Earth’s Outer Radiation Belt Dr Allanson, Oliver 3.00
ACSP154 UNITY: Multi-wavelength simulations of relativistic cosmology Dr Bull, Philip 3.57
ACSP156 Resolving Self-Gravitating Protstellar Disc Evolution in a Star Forming Environment Dr Forgan, Duncan 2.50
ACSP157 The Origin and Evolution of Trans-Neptunian Binaries Dr Fraser, Wesley 5.00
ACSP161 Impact of Reionization on the Intergalactic Medium Dr Onorbe, Jose 60.00
ACSP162 dp078 Multi-band Galaxy Shape Catalogues from DES Year 3 using im3shape Dr Rollins, Richard 3.57
ACSP163 dp033 Simulating Radiative Transfer in Supernovae Dr Sim, Stuart 2.14
PPTM165 dp006 Extreme QCD: Quantifying the QCD Phase Diagram II Prof Allton, Chris 7.69
PPTM166 dp064 First principle predictions of large nuclei and!nucleonic matter Dr Barbieri, Carlo 1.43
PPMT167 dp019 High Precision QCD (computing resources for the hPQCD collaboration) Prof Davies, Christine 600.00
PPMT168 dp007 Hadron physics of up, down and strange quarks Dr Roger Horsley 3.85
PPMT169 dp008 UKQCD–DWF: physics with dynamical chiral quarks Dr Juettner, Andreas 787.69
PPSP170 Numerical methods for high-order perturbative calculations Prof Del Debbio, Luigi 25.00
PPSP171 Signature of compositness of the LHC Dr Drach, Vincent 2.14
PPSP172 Lattice Holographic Cosmology Dr Portelli, Antonin 20.00

Table 3: Data Storage Space from the 10th Resource Allocation Committee Call for Proposals

Data Intensive @Cambridge Data Intensive @Leicester Memory Intensive @Durham DiRAC @Edinburgh
Application ID Project ID Project Title Principal Investigator data (TB) data (TB) data (TB) data (TB)
ACTP138 dp015 High perfromance computing support for Exeter Astrophysics Prof Bate, Matthew 60.00 51.02 10.80
ACTP139 Turbulence, Shocks and Dissipation in Space Plasmas Prof Burgess, David 4.77
ACTP140 dp047 DISCSIM: The formation and evolution of planets in the era of ALMA Prof Clarke, Cathy 1.79 1.79
ACTP141 Simba: New cosmological simulations to study galaxy-black hole co-evolution Prof Dave, Romeel 80.00
ACTP143 dp005 Theoretical Astrophysics at Leicester Dr Alexander, Richard 7.98
ACTP144 dp004 Virgo Consortium Prof Frenk, Carlos 705.60
ACTP145 dp040 Stellar hydrodynamics, evolution and nucleosynthesis (SHEN) Dr Hirschi, Raphael 2.14 5.00
ACTP146 Photoevaporation and properties of the circumstellar environment Dr Owen, James 21.43
ACTP147 Engineering Dwarfs at Galaxy Formation’s Edge Prof Read, Justin 5.71
ACTP149 dp079 Understanding the Milky Way and disc galaxies with Gaia Dr Schoenrich, Ralph 25.00 3.57
ACTP150 dp002 Cosmos Consortium: Unveiling the Structure of the Universe Prof Shellard, E. Paul 10.42 44.64
ACTP151 dp016 Modelling galaxy baryon physics: from cosmological to sub-galactic scales Prof. Slyz, Adrianne 27.36 20.00
ACSP155 Modelling of neutrino masses in the Dark Engery Spectroscopic Instrument Dr Font-Ribera, Andreu 40.00
ACSP156 Resolving Self-Gravitating Protstellar Disc Evolution in a Star Forming Environment Dr Forgan, Duncan 5.00
ACSP157 The Origin and Evolution of Trans-Neptunian Binaries Dr Fraser, Wesley 5.00
ACSP161 Impact of Reionization on the Intergalactic Medium Dr Onorbe, Jose 51.50
ACSP162 dp078 Multi-band Galaxy Shape Catalogues from DES Year 3 using im3shape Dr Rollins, Richard 7.14
ACSP163 dp033 Simulating Radiative Transfer in Supernovae Dr Sim, Stuart 1.43
PPTM165 dp006 Extreme QCD: Quantifying the QCD Phase Diagram II Prof Allton, Chris 15.38
PPTM166 dp064 First principle predictions of large nuclei and!nucleonic matter Dr Barbieri, Carlo 1.43
PPMT167 dp019 High Precision QCD (computing resources for the hPQCD collaboration) Prof Davies, Christine 600.00
PPMT168 dp007 Hadron physics of up, down and strange quarks Dr Roger Horsley 7.69
PPMT169 dp008 UKQCD–DWF: physics with dynamical chiral quarks Dr Juettner, Andreas 1575.38
PPSP170 Numerical methods for high-order perturbative calculations Prof Del Debbio, Luigi 50.00
PPSP172 Lattice Holographic Cosmology Dr Portelli, Antonin 40.00

Table 4: RSE (Research Software Engineering) Effort from the 10th Resource Allocation Committee Call for Proposals

Application ID Project ID Project Title Principal Investigator Reseach Software Engineering effort (months)
ACTP140 dp047 DISCSIM: The formation and evolution of planets in the era of ALMA Prof Clarke, Cathy 2.0
ACTP145 dp040 Stellar hydrodynamics, evolution and nucleosynthesis (SHEN) Dr Hirschi, Raphael 12.0
ACTP149 dp079 Understanding the Milky Way and disc galaxies with Gaia Dr Schoenrich, Ralph 3.0
PPTM165 dp006 Extreme QCD: Quantifying the QCD Phase Diagram II Prof Allton, Chris 3.0
PPMT167 dp019 High Precision QCD (computing resources for the hPQCD collaboration) Prof Davies, Christine 2.0
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