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Introduction

Direct logins to our Shared Computing Resources from off-campus are prohibited. In order to login to these systems from off-campus, there are currently three methods as described below.

SSH Only

Rice faculty, staff, and students may login to our Shared Computing Resources from off-campus with SSH if they have SSH login access to another system on campus which allows off-campus access. This might be an office desktop system or a department server. If this is the case, then SSH login to one of those systems first.  Once you obtain a command line prompt on this host, use SSH to login to the Shared Computing Resource. Thus it will be a two step process to login to these systems as follows:

  1. SSH login to anyhost.rice.edu where anyhost.rice.edu is the hostname of the system you are logging in to.
  2. From anyhost.rice.edu, SSH login to the Shared Compute Resource (such as nots.rice.edu, davinci.rice.edu, etc.)

    Substitute the host name of the campus system you are logging in to in place of anyhost.rice.edu.

If you don't have access to a campus resource that can connect to our Shared Computing Resources you may use our SSH gateway.

  1. SSH login to gw.crc.rice.edu.
  2. From gw.crc.rice.edu, SSH login to the Shared Compute Resource (such as nots.rice.edu, davinci.rice.edu, etc.)

SSH with VPN

Rice faculty, staff, and students may login to Shared Computing Resources from off-campus with SSH by connecting to the Rice network with VPN. VPN (Virtual Private Network) essentially makes the off-campus computer appear as if it were on the Rice network. In order to obtain a VPN account and software, please visit the Rice VPN web site. Thus it will be a two step process to login to these systems:

  1. Connect to the Rice network with VPN using the off-campus computer. Help with that here
  2. SSH login to the Shared Computing Resource (such as davinci.rice.edu, nots.rice.edu, etc).

 

SSH for Guests (no VPN)

People who have accounts on the Shared Computing Systems but are not affiliated with Rice (guest accounts) will likely not have SSH or VPN access to the Rice network. For all users with valid cluster logins, we automatically create an SSH Gateway account that will provide the same capability as the "SSH Only " section above. Using this account will mean that logging in to these systems will be a two-step process:

  1. SSH login to gw.crc.rice.edu from off-campus.
  2. SSH login to the Shared Computing Resource (such as davinci.rice.edu, nots.rice.edu, etc.) from gw.crc.rice.edu.

Policies regarding Quotas, Data Transfers, and Out Bound Connections

For the latest information on the SSH Gateway access policy, please see our FAQ .

How to Transfer Files from Off-Campus

We highly recommend using our Data Transfer Nodes (DTN) to transfer data to and from the clusters. Getting Started on DTN/DTN2/DTN HA.

Additionally, to transfer files from a Linux or Unix machine to the Shared Computing Resources, you can use the scp command. If you are using a VPN connection, then scp will work exactly as described in our SSH FAQ as if you were on campus.

If you are not using VPN and are using an intermediate Rice host or the SSH Gateway as described earlier, then there will be a two step process to transfer files to these systems:

  1. Use scp to transfer files to the intermediate host or the SSH Gateway (gw.crc.rice.edu) from off-campus.
  2. Use scp to transfer files from the intermediate host or the SSH Gateway (gw.crc.rice.edu) to the Shared Computing Resource (such as sugar.rice.edu, stic.rice.edu, etc.).
    In both cases, scp will work as described in our SSH FAQ

Note that if you are using the SSH Gateway for the file transfer process, your home directory on the SSH Gateway has a 250MB quota. If you need to transfer more than 250MB of data, please copy it to the /tmp directory on the SSH Gateway first. This location is a virtual disk, meaning that all contents will be automatically deleted if the system is rebooted. So please do not attempt to store data in this location permanently. It is for temporary storage of data for the purpose of transferring it to the Shared Computing Resources.

For the more experienced user, here is an advanced method for transferring large data sets.

More Information about SSH

For general instructions on how to use SSH, please see our SSH FAQ.