1.5 Monitoring and applying computing resources

In CSC's environment the computing quota is measured in billing units and the storage space in terabytes.

1.5.1 Applying for computing resources

Each project has got a certain amount of billing units that are consumed by the computing tasks and virtual machines executed at CSC. The billing unit consumption is calculated in different ways in different platforms:

  • In Sisu supercomputer the billing unit is defined so that 1 CPU core hours consumes 2 billing units.
  • In Taito cluster the billing unit consumption is based either on the number of reserved cores or number (rounded up to the nearest integer) of 4 GB blocks of memory, depending which is larger. For example:
    • an 8 core job with 16 GB of memory will be billed with 2 x 8 = 16 billing units per hour,
    • an 8 core job with 64 GB of memory will be billed with 2 x 16 = 32 billing units per hour.

To get more resources for a Commercial Project requires renewal of the customer agreement with CSC.

Additional computing resources can be applied for an Academic Project in the Scientist's User Interface. Any project member can apply for additional resources, not just the project's PI.

To apply for more billing units for computing, please open the My Projects tool. Select the project for which you want to apply for more resources. Then choose Apply For Resources. Fill in the form that opens. You can find the filling instructions by clicking Help. Press Send to submit your application.

Figure: Resource application form for an Academic Project.

The upcoming deadlines for resource applications are available on main CSC webpages. See also the instructions on how to to apply for more data storage space for your project.

Those who require exceptionally large computing or storage resources can apply for them through periodically announced Grand Challenge and PRACE Tier-0 and Tier-1 calls.

1.5.2 Switching between projects

If you have more than one project you might want to use one project for certain tasks and the other projects for other tasks. This can be done by changing the user's billing project.

The default billing project can changed with the My Projects tool in the Scientist's User Interface. This tool lists the computing projects you can use. To set the default billing project, select a project from the list and press "Set As Billing Project" as decribed in Chapter 1.4.3.

To change the billing project temporarily, run the newgrp command on the command line. This command actually changes the primary Linux group. It takes as the argument the name of the group that you want your new primary group to be. Groups and projects are linked with each other.

The newgrp command is best used in combination with the sbatch command (the command that submits a batch job to computing nodes, see chapter 4.3):

taito-login3:~$ newgrp project_2000084
taito-login3:~$ sbatch job1.sh
Submitted batch job 10282312
taito-login3:~$ newgrp project_2000251
taito-login3:~$ sbatch job2.sh
Submitted batch job 10282313

The first job will be charged to the project 2000084 and the second to the project 2000251. You can check the groups you belong to using the command groups or id.

To change the billing project permanently, sign in to the Scientist's User Interface and open the My Projects tool (Figure 1.4). In the tool, select the project which you want to become your new billing project. Then choose Set As Billing Project below the project list. The billing project changes on computing servers the next time you log in. If you are already logged in, you need to log out and log back in.

1.5.3 Viewing computing resource usage

When your computing quota is zero or close to zero, you start getting this kind of warnings:

WARNING: You belong to the project 2000251, which has used over 80% of its quota.
CRITICAL: You belong to the project 2000084, which has used all its CPU time quota.
Project 2000084 is not allowed to submit any new jobs.

The project whose resources are finished you can no longer use batch jobs in Sisu or Taito:

taito-login4:~$ sbatch job.sh
sbatch: error: Job aborted, your project ran out of CPU quota.
sbatch: error: Batch job submission failed: Job violates accounting/QOS policy (job submit limit, user's size and/or time limits)

When your storage quota is used up, you get this kind of errors:

write error: Disk quota exceeded

The usage of computing resources can be monitored both on computing servers and at the Scientist's User Interface. The storage space usage can be monitored only on computing servers.

To view computing resource usage at the Scientist's User Interface, sign in to the service and open the My Projects tool (Figure 1.4). The usage is shown in the Information box. In the future, the CPU Usage box will provide more detailed information about your usage: you could for example define a time period to be viewed or break down the usage by project members.

Computing quota is expressed in billing units and the storage space in gigabytes. The billing unit is defined so that 1 CPU core hour on Sisu, Taito or cPouta consumes 2 billing units.

The computing resource usage can be monitored on computing servers using the saldo command. An example output is shown below. A more detailed documentation about the saldo command is available.

taito-login4:~$ saldo
Saldo for year 2016 month 8
Report updated 23.08.2016 10:15
Project 10002444  Personal group of adam
start 17.06.2016      end: XXX              budget: 01.01.1970
CSC budget: 1000      used: 1000            remain: 0
Project 2000084  Air flow simulations of funny hats Professor Propelli
start 14.09.2015      end: 13.09.2017       budget: 14.08.2016
CSC budget: 10000     used: 10000           remain: 0
Project 2000251  Optimization of propeller design for hats Professor Propelli
start 03.02.2016      end: 02.02.2018       budget: 03.02.2016
CSC budget: 10000     used: 800             remain: 200
         Cpu usage         Cpu secs     Bu
2000084  adam                360000    100 sisu
         adam                720000    200 taito
         adam       Tot     1080000    300

2000084  bertta              360000    100 taito
         bertta     Tot      360000    100

         Cpu        total   1440000    400


1.5.4 Viewing storage space usage

The storage space usage can be checked from the command line using the quota command. An example output is shown below. For more information on the quota command, and hints on how to find the files that use the most space, see chapter 3.1.

taito-login4:~$ quota
Size  Used   Quota  Files  User/Group  /wrk/adam
3.4P  9.54G  5120G  14     adam
3.4P  0.00G  0G     0      project_2000084
3.4P  9.54G  0G     14     project_2000251
3.4P  0.00G  0G     0      project_10002444
Size  Used   Quota  Files  User/Group  /homeappl
43T   8.19G  50G    87156  adam
43T   4.83G  0G     49839  project_2000084
43T   2.64G  0G     34886  project_2000251
43T   0.72G  0G     2431   project_10002444
Size  Used   Quota  Files  Group    /proj
385T  0.00G  0G     0      project_2000084
385T  0.00G  0G     0      project_2000251
385T  0.00G  0G     0      project_10002444
HPC-Archive used space summary for 'adam'.
Amount of archived files: 1.
Amount of files received but not yet archieved (in queue for archiving): 0.
Quota: 2500.0GB.
Space used (archived files): 0/2500GB.
Total space used (archived files + files in queue): 0/2500GB (0.00 %).


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