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In order to use the resources of our HPC computng nodes, you must submit your computing tasks through Slurm, which will ensure that your task, or job, is given exclusive access to some CPUs, memory, and GPUs if needed. Slurm also intelligently queues jobs from different users to most efficiently use our nodes' resources.
Slurm is only accessible while SSHed into
Submitting a job to Slurm can be done in one of two ways: through
srun, options are supplied using command-line flags, and the job
is attached to the terminal you run
srun from. If there is a queue to run
jobs, the terminal will wait until your job starts running, and if the terminal
closes, the job will be cancelled.
By contrast, to submit a job using
sbatch, you must first create a batch file
that includes options for your job, and the commands that your job will run.
The batch file is then submitted, and after the job runs, log files with the
job's output to
stdout are put into your home directory.
If your job requires interactivity or inputs from the terminal, or you need a
terminal to test or experiment, use
srun. Otherwise, use
sbatch, as you
don't have to keep your terminal open until the job runs.
Alternatively, you could use
srun to keep your
job alive, even if you disconnect from your terminal.
Some terminology: Slurm refers to a process as a "task". Even if a single process is using multiple threads/CPUs, it still counts as one task.
By default, without any flags, a job you submit will be allocated one CPU, 100 MB of RAM, and no GPUs, and will run for at maximum 2 days. In order to allocate more resources and time to your job, you must set one or more of these flags:
Tcan be appended to the number instead. For example, to allocate 5 gigabytes of ram, use
--mem=5G. Default is 100 megabytes.
--gres=gpu:[optional type]:[number to allocate]. For example, to allocate 2 GPUs of any type, you would include
--gres=gpu:2. To allocate two Nvidia 1080Ti GPUs (our only type right now), you would include
--gres=gpu:nv1080:2. Default is no GPUs.
srun [command-line flags] [command to run]
For example, to run a job that uses 4 CPUs, 8 GB of RAM, and 1 GPU:
bzh@hpcctl:~$ srun --ntasks=1 --cpus-per-task=4 --mem=8G --gres=gpu:1 echo "Hello world!" Hello world!
To start up an interactive terminal on a compute node, use the
terminal of choice] flag. For most everyone, you'll be using
bash, so to
start an interactive terminal on a node, run:
srun [other command-line flags] --pty bash
A Slurm batch script is functionally the same as a regular
bash script: The
bash shebang at the start, and script after.
However, to pass options into SLURM, you'll need to add some special comment
lines, which are in the format
#SBATCH [command-line flag]=[value]. They
must be after the shebang but before any non-comments.
For example, a batch script which uses 4 CPUs, 8 GB of RAM, and 1 GPU has its contents as:
#!/bin/bash #SBATCH --ntasks=1 #SBATCH --cpus-per-task=4 #SBATCH --mem=8G #SBATCH --gres=gpu:1 echo "Hello world!"
You submit batch scripts to Slurm with:
sbatch [path to batch script]
By default, output from your job (
stderr) is placed into a file
in the directory you ran
sbatch from. it will be named
To specify a different output file, use the
--output flag. For
example, to redirect output to a file named
job.log in your home directory,
To cancel your job before it's run, run
scancel [job ID]. Your job's ID is
output when a batch script is submitted, or you can find it using
(more details below).
To view the queue of running and pending jobs from all users, run
see the details of one job, run
squeue -j [job ID].
To view the list of all HPC nodes, and some details about them, run