SSCC News January 2024

Open OnDemand

Do you need the power of the SSCC’s Linux servers, but find a command line interface intimidating? Are you a veteran Linux user who still misses the convenience of a graphical user interface? Or do you just want to log into Linstat without having to install anything?

Open OnDemand lets you log into the SSCC’s Linux servers using your web browser and gives you a graphical “desktop” interface similar to a Mac or Windows computer. Or you can start a terminal and use it just like you’ve used Linux for years, including submitting jobs to Slurm. Using Linux has never been so easy. To access OnDemand all you need is a browser–no need for special software like X-Win32 or XQuartz. Just get on the SSCC network using VPN (or log into Winstat), go to and log in using your SSCC credentials. The SSCC Knowledge base can walk you through how to log in to OnDemand and how to carry out common tasks using the OnDemand interface but it’s pretty intuitive.

We also have training classes available that introduce you to OnDemand and how researchers can take advantage of the SSCC’s computing resources.

Matlab Parallel Server

The SSCC now has Matlab Parallel Server available: jobs running on Linstat can create a parallel pool that spans multiple Slurm servers, allowing you to use hundreds of cores–thousands if they’re available. The pool can then be used just like any other parallel pool. To learn how, read Running Matlab Parallel Server at the SSCC.

Training Still Available for R, Python, and OnDemand

There is still time to sign up for Introduction to R, Categorical Variables in R, and Introduction to Python for Data Analysis. We also have workshops coming up on OnDemand and Running Big Research Computing Jobs at the SSCC.

MFA Required to Access Linstat

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is now required to access Linstat unless you are on Winstat or using the SSCC VPN (which already requires MFA). Note that this includes computers in the Sewell Social Science Building! To log into Linstat from your own computer we suggest first connecting to the SSCC VPN. It’s required to use X-Win32, and allows you to map SSCC network drives for easy access. If you choose not to use VPN, you’ll need to connect to a gateway server called rather than to directly.

You’ll need to use Multifactor Authentication (MFA) to log into either VPN or the gateway, so take a moment to set it up now if you haven’t already. To set up MFA or to modify Duo’s settings, you can go to the SSCC’s Duo MFA portal.

Tip: Take Advantage of Stata MP

Stata MP allows Stata to use multiple cores, speeding up computationally-intensive tasks. You don’t need to change your code to use it; the Stata commands themselves have been parallelized. To run Stata MP on Winstat (4 cores) or Winstat for Big Jobs (24 cores), right-click on a do file and choose “Execute Stata MP Batch Mode.” Or switch to the Linux servers where Stata MP is the default. The Linstat servers have either 36 cores or 48 cores, and if you submit your Stata job to Slurm you can use 64 cores (the most Stata MP can handle).

For more information, see Running Stata MP at the SSCC.