The SDUCloud is a digital research environment. It provides an interface that improves the HPC environment usability and the access to Applications and Software regardless of users’ location and devices. It also serves as a data storage, where the users can store their data in compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
The goal of this quick start is mainly to show how to:
- Login to SDUCloud
- Navigate SDUCloud
- Upload/download files
- Run applications
To login to SDUCloud the users have to use WAYF (Where Are You From). This makes it possible for all users affiliated with a Danish educational institution to login without having a separate account for the SDUCloud. All they need is the username/password that they use at their own institution.
Once their credentials are approved, the users are automatically redirected to the SDUCloud home screen. The login ID is shown on the bottom-left side of the home screen. Below the user ID there is a link with the description of the SDU Data Protection policy adopted by the SDUCloud. The users also have the possibility to set up a “Two Factor Identification” by clicking on the avatar on the top-right corner of the home screen.
The SDUCloud home screen contains a Top Navigation Bar, a left-side Menu and a Central Dashboard.
The Top Navigation Bar consists of several parts. By clicking “SDUCloud” on the top-left corner the user is always redirected to the home screen during navigation. In the middle the user finds a search box. This allows the user to search for files and applications that contain the search query as a part of their name. If the user clicks on the small arrow in the search box, more search options will be made available. For files the users can also narrow the search by stating a time-slot for creation or modification, whether he/she is searching for a folder or file, wether to include or not the shared folders and the file extension. For applications the user can select the specific version and tag.
On the top right-side corner of the Top Navigation Bar the user finds 4 icons. A refresh icon can be used to refresh the Central Dashboard. A support-form icon allows the users to send suggestions or report bugs. Via the notification-service icon the users will be notified when another user has shared a file with them, or if one of their applications has finished running and has returned with results. Lastly, by clicking on the user-Avatar icon, it is possible to change the Settings (namely set up a Two Factor Identification), edit the Avatar and Logout.
The Menu is on the left side of the home screen. No matter where the user navigates in the SDUCloud, the Menu will always be located on the left side of the screen. If used in a small window or on a smaller screen, such as a mobile phone or a tablet, the Menu will collapse, but it can still be unfolded by using the menu button on the top-left corner.
From the Menu it is possible to navigate to the 6 main parts of the SDUCloud:
- Files: Allows the user to explore the filesystem
- Shares: Allows the user to explore files that have been shared with/by the user
- Apps: Allows the user to browse all available applications and add them to Favorites for easy access
- Runs: Shows the user the results from completed job applications
- Activity: Gives the user an overview of all activities regarding files/folders
The Central Dashboard consists of several sections, which provide a broad summary of the user’s recent activity. It can be refreshed by clicking on “SDUCloud” on the top-left corner of the home screen page.
The information in the Central Dashboard is organized in 6 panels:
- Favorite Files
- Recently Used Files
- Recent Jobs
- Recent Notifications
- Storage Used
- Compute Time Used
In Favorite Files the user can easily search for files or folders tagged as “favorite”, which are used several times for different purposes. The panel Recently Used Files provides a list of files and folders used earlier. This is sorted by time so that the most recently used is at the top. By clicking on the file name, the user is redirected to the file folder. In Recent Jobs there are links to applications that the user recently has executed, each one marked as: “Success”, “Failure” or “Running”. Recent Notifications show the notifications that have been received by the user. Unread notifications will be highlighted. By using the checkmark in the top-right corner the user marks all the notifications as read. The Storage Used panel shows the total amount of storage used. Finally, in Compute Time Used the user can see how much daily computing time has been used. Both from the Storage Used and Compute Time Used panels it is possible to access a chart which shows how the user has used her/his resources over time.
To upload a file, the user should move to the Files part of the SDUCloud left-side Menu. The page should look something like this:
In the right side, on the top, there is the possibility to create a new folder and upload a file. If New Folder is selected, a new folder appears and a name can be given to the folder. If Upload Files is selected, the user will be prompted with the upload dialog window.
Here the users can either drag-and-drop a file or use the browse option to browse their computer. The user is able to upload one or more files, or a “.tar.gz” or a “.zip” file that either can be extracted once uploaded or simply uploaded as an archive. The files will be uploaded to the current folder.
Once a file has been uploaded it will be available to the user. If the file is selected, a number of options are shown to the user in the right side of the screen. These options include: Rename, Upload, Download, Share, Sensitivity, Copy, Move, Properties and Move to Trash. The options are also available in the file dropdown menu, even if the file is not selected.
The Sensitivity field allows to specify the sensitivity level of the selected file/directory, which is marked with a capital letter on the right side. The available options are:
- Private (P): Data that are freely available to external parties without requiring confidentiality agreements.
- Confidential (C): Information that is important to the core business/project; high availability and high integrity are critical, regardless of the level of confidentiality required.
- Sensitive (S): Data related to an individual, e.g. a customer, a citizen, a patient or an employee.
When a new file is uploaded in the system it automatically inherits the sensitivity level of the current folder, unless specified otherwise. The field Properties shows metadata associated to the selected file/directory, which includes date of creation, sensitivity level and list of users sharing the file.
It is also possible to add a file/folder to Favorites by hovering above it and clicking the small star next to its name. When a file or a folder is moved to trash, it is not deleted. To do this, the user should navigate to the trash folder. Here the user will be able to empty the trash and thereby permanently delete the files/folders.
In order to download a file/folder the user can either mark the file or click on the file dropdown and choose download. If a folder is chosen, a “.zip” file will be generated for download.
In the right side, on the bottom, there is the possibility of using files and folders locally.
If Use your files locally is selected, the user will be redirected to the authentication page. After re-authentication the user needs to select her/his platform and follow the instructions.
Once the suggested user and password have been entered, the user is redirected to a local window were she/he can edit and copy the files stored on the platform, move or create new directory etc.
Sharing files and folders
Within the platform, users can share files and folders with other users. From the Files section of the Menu, the user can mark the folder/file, select the share option and write the ID of the collaborator with whom she/he want to share the folder. The ID of each user is at the left side of the screen, on the bottom.
Here the user can also set the collaborator permissions.
The shared folders/files can be accessed from the Shares option in the menu bar on the left.
In the Shared by me section, the user can change the collaborators permission and revoke the access to a shared folder/file.
Browsing for an Application
By clicking Apps in the left-side Menu, the user can access the catalogue of applications available on the SDUCloud, grouped in different blocks.
On the top, the user can see her/his favorite applications. Applications can be included to the Favorites list for easy access in the future by hovering above the small red bookmark on the application panel and clicking on it. In the second block, Featured, the user can find a selection of 25 interactive applications. The blocks which follow, group different application tools.
By clicking on the Show All button on the left, it is possible to access a complete list of the items which belong to the block category.
To get further information about an application, the user can click on it.
Here it is possible to run the application by clicking on the Run Application button. In addition, any application can be added to Apps/Favorites with the Add to favorites button. Afterwards, the user can remove it from the list of favorite applications by using the Remove from favorites button.
Running an Application
There are two ways of running an application. Either the user can go to the detailed view of an application and push the Run Application button on the right side, or the user can run it directly from Favorites, if the application was previously added there. In order to start the run, the user is asked to fill in the required information or add the input files.
From the same window it is possible to import useful set of parameters (via the Import parameters button) and set the time necessary for the application. It is advisable to keep it close to what the application really needs since the job scheduler uses these values to allocate system resources efficiently. Giving the application more time than it needs might postpone the job unnecessarily.
In addition the user can select the Machine type by clicking on the Machine type area.
Once an application has been started (by clicking the Submit button), the user is forwarded to the progress view of that specific job. This can also be found by clicking on the job under the Runs section of the left-side Menu. Once the job is completed, a link to the result files will be available in the progress view.
To perform the logout from SDUCloud, simply click the avatar in the top-right corner and choose logout.
Congratulations! You now have the knowledge to access the SDUCloud, manage your files and run applications from the SDUCloud.