Software Policies

From ALICE Documentation


Commercial / Fee-based software

ALICE has commercial and freeware packages installed on our supercomputers. Our approach to the acquisition of additional software depends upon its cost, licensing restrictions, and user interest.

  1. Single User Interest. The license for the software is purchased by the user and his/her department or sponsor. This software is best installed by the user. There are two main options; the first and easier is to install the software in /home or /extra using the example procedure. The second is to use the "unsupported" environment. The advantage is that you can share the software built here with other users. This is created by sending a request to HPC Consult who will create an "unsupported" group in which you can build software and add users.
  2. Group Interest. If a package is of interest to a group of several users, the best approach at first is for one user to act as a primary sponsor and arrange to split the procurement/licensing costs among the group. We can install the software and manage the user access according to requests from the group.
  3. Broad Interest. The High-Performance Computing team will consider acquiring and supporting software packages that have broad interest among our users. Full facility support will depend on the cost of the package and our ability to comply with any restrictive licensing conditions.

Academic / Free software

There is an abundance of software generally available for scientific and research usage. We will install that software if it meets the following requirements:

  1. Compatible with our module environment. Some software though is not written with clusters in mind and tries to install into system directories, or needs a custom environment on every compute node.
  2. Generally useful. Some software has to be configured to the specific compute environment of the user. You are encouraged to use our "unsupported" environment to install your own.
  3. Public license. We do not install software if that would be a violation of its licensing.
  4. Reasonably well written. Some software takes days of effort and still does not work right. We have limited resources and reserve the right to "give up".