Campus Cluster for Faculty Research

ITS is excited to be a part of the University of Illinois Campus Cluster project. Investing in the Campus Cluster allows UIS faculty to have access to high-performance computers to meet the research need for high-scale computing.

UIS currently has 22TB (soft limit) and 24TB (hard limit) of space to utilize.

The Campus Cluster maintains a variety of core software and libraries to support computing activities, including R, Java, Mathematica, and MATLAB. For a complete list of core software, please see the Software List.

Accessing the Campus Cluster

Faculty who are interested in working with the Campus Cluster should contact Kara McElwrath at kmcel2@uis.edu to set up account access.

There are currently 6 headnodes set up round-robin. Users may SSH to any of those to connect to the cluster. List of SSH clients to use to connect to the cluster.

If you have a need for high performance file transfers, download Globus. You will be assigned a personal set up key for each device you register.

In order to connect, use the connection information below on your SSH client or Globus:

Hostname: cc-login.campuscluster.illinois.edu

Login credentials:  Your UIS NetID and password

Queue name: UISITS

Submitting and Running a Job

To run a job on the Campus Cluster, you will need to set up a Portable Batch System (PBS) file. This PBS file defines the commands and cluster resources used for the job.

You must first log in to one of the head nodes, and submit a PBS job. The qsub command is used to submit a job to the PBS queue and to request additional resources. The qstat command is used to check on the status of a job already in the PBS queue. To simplify submitting a job, you can create a PBS script and use the qsub and qstat commands to interact with the PBS queue.

Here is a sample PBS file, named myjobs.pbs, followed by an explanation of each line of the file.

#!/bin/csh [indicating which shell will be used for the job – n this example, bash is used but csh or other valid shells would also work]
#PBS -l walltime=00:05:00 [indicating the job will run every 5 minutes]
##PBS -l nodes=2:ppn=12:IB [indicating the job will use 2 nodes, 12 cores per node, and run in InfiniBand]
#PBS -q UISITS [indicating which queue to use]
#PBS -N myjob [indicating the name for the job]
#PBS -e stderror.myjob.log.$PBS_JOBID [indicating the path to be used for the standard error stream of the batch job]
#PBS -o stdout.myjob.log.$PBS_JOBID [indicating the path to be used for the standard output stream of the batch job]
#PBS -m abe [indicating that mail will be sent when the job is aborted, when the job begins to execute, when the job terminates]
#PBS -M kmcel2@uis.edu [indicating that the mails will be sent to this address]

To submit your job without requesting additional resources, issue the command:

qsub myjob.pbs

Campus Cluster Documentation and Resources

Beginner’s Guide

User Guide for the Campus Cluster

Documentation on How GPFA ACLs Work

FAQ

Software List

Why UIS Invests in the Campus Cluster

Investing in computing resources on the cluster provide faculty with access to the number and type of nodes in which we invested. When any owner is not using his or her share, any other user may take advantage of the surplus. In this way, researchers get more computing capacity for their money than they would by building many separate systems across campus. Pooling computer resources also helps researchers control expenses and reduce overhead, shorten startup time, avoid space renovation and free up space formerly used for separate cluster resources, and reduce the campus carbon footprint.

How Faculty Are Using the Campus Cluster

Read below to hear faculty at UIUC are taking advantage of the Campus Cluster to aid in their research.