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The newsletter of the SIE de Investigación y Enseñanza N. 14 - December 2006 / January 2007

Javier Ganivet's work at the SIE

During the last 4 months Javier Ganivet has enjoyed a collaboration grant with the SIE, which ended on the 30th of November. His work (which has been summarised in a PDFdocument) has been centered around our Chimera cluster, focusing in the following areas: recopilation of information about the EM64T extensions (Intel's effort at 64 bits computing); running a number of different benchmarks and testing the Chimera cluster with different configurations of parallel libraries; and configuring the Ganglia monitoring software in order to get more accurate information about the real CPU load of the cluster. We also remind you that if you have any particular opinions on how to make the best use of the cluster, you can make your point at the SIE Forum.

Code running 117 times faster thanks to our Beowulf cluster!

The SIE installs, maintains and administers a part of the IAC's Supercomputing infrastructure (the Chimera cluster, and the Condor grid), but we also give support and help you make good use of it. As a recent example, we are collaborating with the "Alta Resolución en Física Solar" group to run the MOMFBD code (a Multi-Frame Blind Deconvolution algorithm developed at the Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics at the University of Oslo and the Institute for Solar Physics at the Swedish Royal Academy of Sciences) in the IAC Beowulf clusters. As a result, the running time of the code with a simple set of images went down from 39 hours using one workstation to around 20 minutes! If you have (or would like to have) code that takes ages to run, get in touch with us and we might be able to help you save some precious time.

Treat yourself to an "Elastic Cluster" at Amazon this Christmas

Tired of boring Christmas presents? Amazon has a lot to offer, including an "Elastic Compute Cloud" which you can turn into a Cluster that can grow or sink on-the-fly as needed. But why would you want one of this? Imagine the following scenario in which you have an instrument that every night produces some data that needs to be processed by the following night. The amount (or the complexity) of the data can be different every night, so you don't know in advance how much CPU power you will need to process your data. If you have a similar scenario the "Elastic Cluster" could be a solution for you: every day you can determine how many CPUs you will need to process the data and dinamically create your cluster. If this sounds interesting, do get in touch with us to see the demonstration of the "Elastic Cluster" that we are working on.

tree and fitscut

We have recently installed two small but useful tools in Linux.
tree is a recursive directory listing program that produces a depth indented listing of files. Just type tree ~/ to list your home directory. Type tree --help for the full list of options.
fitcuts is designed to extract cutouts from FITS image format files, it supports FITS, PNG, and JPEG output types. For usage instructions and relevant links, check out SINFIN's Fitscut page.

linklint, program to check Web links

Are you currently developing or maintaining a website? Have you ever looked for and fixed broken internal and external links? Regularly checking links on a website should be a staple activity of any Webmaster. Internal links may break because Web pages are moved or renamed; external links may get broken because websites are relocated to a new place or server, or the URL address has changed, or sites have shut down altogether. We have installed linklint, a relatively easy to use tool to check both internal and external links. Its basic usage is described in our most recent SIEpedia article.
SIE de Investigación y Enseñanza :: N. 14 - December 2006 / January 2007- Contact: