Computing Services

Getting Started

Supercomputing Services at Penn State

Penn State ICDS operates and continuously improves the Roar supercomputer, formerly known as ICDS-ACI, the university’s high performance research cloud. Here’s what you you need to know and do to get started using the system.

What You’ll Need to Use Roar

We recommend that Roar users have:

  • Knowledge of the Linux/UNIX command-line interface
  • Knowledge of how to use Environment Modules
  • A basic understanding of how high-performance computing (HPC) or “supercomputing” works

Roar Accounts and Allocations

Getting Started Checklist

1. Do you have a Penn State Access Account?  Slim Access account?

2. Is Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) set up?

To keep Roar secure, we require two-factor authentication. Penn State uses a 2FA service from Duo Security. Follow these instructions to enroll.

3. Did you apply for a Roar account?

To log in to the Roar systems, you will need an Roar account. To apply, visit the Account Setup page.

4. Will the default computing and storage resources meet your needs?

Once you have an ICDS account, you will be able to submit jobs to the Open Queue. If the Open Queue will not meet your needs, you should obtain an Roar allocation. Your allocation on Roar determines the number of cores and amount of storage on Roar you can access. Jobs that run using the Guaranteed Response Time (GReaT) model will count against your allocation.

For storage services: By default, every Roar user receives access to two free storage directories:

  • Home: Up to 10 GB or 500,000 files.
  • Work: Up to 128 GB of shared storage or 1 million files.

If additional storage is required or you need to store large amounts of data, you will need to purchase an allocation. To see current service rates, please see Service Details.

If you are a principal investigator (PI), contact aci-info@ics.psu.edu to purchase an allocation. If you are part of a research group, you will need to ask the PI to add you to the existing allocation.

Want to try out Roar before purchasing an allocation? Request a 30-day trial.

5. Do you have PuTTY Secure Shell (SSH) Client (if using Windows)?

Windows users may use the PuTTY SSH client or another SHH client to connect to Roar. PuTTY is available here.

Mac and Linux users can use SSH utilities in the command line to connect to ICDS-ACI.

6. Do you have WinSCP Secure Copy Protocol Client (if using Windows)?

Windows users may use the file transfer client WinSCP or another file transfer client to move files between your storage on ICDS-ACI and your local computer. WinSCP is available here.

Mac and Linux users can move files with the scp command in the command line.

Performing Basic Tasks on Roar:

The Roar User Guide contains instructions for performing basic tasks:

  • Logging in
  • Submitting jobs
  • Checking jobs
  • Cancelling jobs
  • Transferring files

You can also consult our collection of online, on-demand Roar Training Videos, attend an Roar Training Series workshop, or check out other training resources.

Roar Support:

Need help? If you can’t find answers to your questions in the User Guide, you can contact our i-ASK Center by phone or email, or submit a ticket.