UABgrid General Questions
What is the Grid?
"The Grid" is a generic name for a global, consumable information technology infrastructure designed to enable individuals and groups to build applications that support their collaboration goals.
UABgrid Login and Registration
How do I participate in a collaboration hosted on UABgrid?
Only registered users can join a collaboration. Please note, however, that it is up to the collaboration to decide if access is restricted to members alone and what the conditions of membership are. You can browse the list of existing public virtual organizations here.
How do I register with UABgrid?
Simply click register with UABgrid. You'll be asked to authenticate and then prompted to enter and confirm a working email address. Once you are registered you can join a virtual organization of interest. It's likely you will want to coordinate your membership request with the owners of the virtual organization. Simply requesting to join virtual organizations when you are not known to them will likely not result in acceptance of your membership request, unless the organization has open membership practices.
What use is the password sent during registration?
The "password" that was sent to you by the UABgrid registration process was simply to verify that the email address you entered is working and is delivered to an account under your control, ie. you can read the email sent to that address.
Do I ever use the registration password again?
No. The registration password will never be needed by you again. It is simply to show that the email address you specified during registration was able to recieved the verification email and that you were able to read that message. Pasting the registration password in the confirmation text box completes the registration process and the need for that password.
What happens after 8 hours expires? Do I just request new password?
The only password you'll ever use to access UABgrid is the one associated with your login ID. For example, members of the UAB community can use their BlazerId and password.
When you request a protected resource on UABgrid, you will be asked for your login ID. Depending on the features offered by your login ID provider, you may not need to enter your username and password for an extended period of time. For example, with the UAB Pilot Federated Identity Service you won't need to enter your BlazerID and password for up to 8 hours when working in the same browser session.
What if I'm not a member of UAB?
You should select the OpenIdP.org login ID if you are not a member of the UAB community, ie. you don't have a BlazerID and password and don't know what that is. openidp.org will let you create an identity as long as you have a working email address. Please visit openidp.org | The Open Identity Provder to get started.
Help, I chose the wrong login ID and now I automatically end up at the UAB login page. How do I fix it?
When you select a login ID, you choice is, by default, remembered for the duration of your browser session. When you close your browser, your chose will be forgotten. You can also adjust your settings with the Login application. If you have a default login ID selected, you will be able to unset it. If you don't, you'll be able to select one and configure it's duration. These settings are also avaible during the login process. They can be exposed by clicking on the "Settings" link.
May I contribute to UABgrid Documentation?
Yes. The UABgrid Documentation is maintained as a wiki and community contributions are welcome and encouraged. The documentation site leverages the same software used to build Wikipedia. You are encouraged to lend your expertise on topics that interest you. You must be a registered UABgrid user to login in and contribute. If you see material that you feel is missing, you are encouraged to document it.
Who "owns" UABgrid Documentation?
Because UABgrid Documentation represents the work of many contributors it is was considered best to limit restrictions as much as possible and protect the freedoms of its users, thus allowing contributors to receive credit for their work and not restricting others from using and expanding upon the work.
What license covers UABgrid Documentation?
UABgrid documentation is published under the [Free Documentation License] Please familiarize yourself with this license and respect copyrights by not submitting copyrighted work without permission.
How do I edit UABgrid Documentation?
Simply click on the "edit" link associated with a section of the page or on the "Edit" tab at the top of page if you edit affects the whole page, eg. like adding a new section. For help on the wiki markup please see Help:Editing.
Please be sure to read Help:Editing for more details but a quick summary follows for convenience. The general structure of an external link is
- [link<space>text describing link]
The <space> being a space character. Its just spelled out here for emphasis.
Any internal wiki page can be referenced just by putting the name in CamelCase. If you want the referencing text to be different than the internal page name you need to put the link in double brackets:
- [[pagename referencing text]]
If you want the page name itself to contain space characters, you must explicitly separate the page name from the referencing text with a vertical bar |
- [[pagename with space|referencing text]]
In both cases, if the page does not already exist it will be created automatically when the link to it is clicked.
How do I attach documents to a wiki page?
You can upload documents to the UABgrid Documentation site using the Special:Upload link available in the toolbox menu. You must be logged in to upload files, so be sure you've logged in via UABgrid before attempting uploads.
As a general rule, only upload files related to the documentation on the site. Once a file is uploaded, you can reference it in the documentation using the standard [image markup].
Please note that only image files (eg. PNG, JPEG) support preview thumnails. These are automatically created and can be reference with the appropriate syntax.
For non-image files, you should use the "Link to description page" or "Link directly to file" [], as there is no ability to provide previews or thumbnails for these files.
SysAdmin & Dev Questions
Who manages UABgrid?
UABgrid is developed and managed by the @lab. The @lab is a virtual organization (VO) on the UABgrid that consists of members of the IT, CIS, and Engineering organizations and other departments with HPC investments and expertise.
Where can I find out more about this effort?
During the development phase of UABgrid, the best place to go is probably the main UABgrid project page. From there you'll find many links to follow. As UABgrid evolves, a more formal front end will be developed.
How do I keep up with development progress?
The main project page is a good place to start, but most of the tools used offer RSS feeds. It is recommendedt that you subscribe to the appropriate RSS feeds for your area of interest. A master feed summary page is planned.
How do I add an application to UABgrid?
There are two types of applications: compute applications and web applications. These are roughly distinguished as applications without and with a graphic user interface, respectively. Adding a compute application require that you have a compute resource to put it on and that this compute resource is part of the UABgrid. Additional, an optional web application to provide GUI can be installed. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more specifics on this at present. Documentation will follow.
Adding a web application to the UABgrid is fairly straight forward. Please see UABgrid Web Applications for details.
How do I add UABgrid as Service Provider for my Organization?
If you operate an Identity provider and would like to allow your users to participate in collaborations hosted on UABgrid using their identities from your organization you need to follow several steps.
- Please review the operating policies of UABgrid to see if they satisfy your trust requirements.
- If you would like to proceed, please add the UABgrid SP Metadata to your !IdP configuration.
- Please contact email@example.com to begin process of adding your metadata to UABgrid and enure the necessary attributes are released.
Do you support JSR168 Portlets?
JSR168 is a java specification for developing application components (portlets) that run in Java-based web portal environments. Generally we won't be concerned about the portlet compatability with JSR168. This detail will most often be determined by the standards compliance of the portal envrionment supported by a particular portlet. In the grid context, our primary interest is in portlets that run in the GridSphere portal environment, with a preference toward GridSphere 3.x. Portlets and portlet suites like OGCE will typically advertise support for specific portals. This is the compatibility that concerns us.
What version(s) of Linux do you use?
For our server systems use a mix of CentOS (a no-cost re-packaging of RedHat Enterprise Linux) as our mainline platform when RedHat compatibility is needed or desired by applications, Debian when building custom function devices and lightweight virtual machines, and are exploring the UAB licensed Novell SUSE Enterprise Linux Server (SLES) for use on the UABgrid pilot infrastructure.
We have used openSUSE (the open source project version of Novell's SUSE linux, currently at version 10.3) for all the desktop systems in the Advanced Technology Lab for many years and have found openSUSE best addresses the desktop power-user/developer needs.
The compute clusters at UAB use CentOS almost exclusively, mainly due due to familiarity in the broader HPC community but also as a scalable cost consideration. The main exception is UAB BlueGene which uses SLES on it's head and control node. The reason for this is SUSE's support for the IBM PowerPC architecture. SUSE has maintained support for a broader hardware architecture base than other vendors (x86, x86_64, PowerPC and Itanium),
Application needs most often drive the selection. Hardware compatibility requirements have also been influential in the past. CentOS and openSUSE have been primary choices for running the bare metal systems, but we consider most distributions as candidates for VMware virtual machine-based installs.