Connecting to foseres
On the foseres system, interactive access can be achieved via SSH, either
directly from a command line terminal or using an SSH client. In
addition data can be transferred to and from the foseres system using
scp from the command line or by using a file transfer client.
This section covers the basic connection methods.
You need to be connected to the University VPN to access foseres.
To access foseres, you need a login and password, that will be provided once your requested your account by filling up the form available on https://www.plymouth.ac.uk/about-us/university-structure/faculties/science-engineering/hpc/what-is-a-cluster
You can find more detailed instructions on how to set up your credentials to access foseres from Windows, macOS and Linux below.
Interaction with foseres is done remotely, over an encrypted communication channel, Secure Shell. This allows command-line access to one of the login nodes of a foseres, from which you can run commands or use a command-line text editor to edit files. SSH can also be used to run graphical programs such as GUI text editors and debuggers when used in conjunction with an X client.
Logging in from Linux and MacOS
Linux distributions and MacOS each come installed with a terminal application that can be use for SSH access to the login nodes. Linux users will have different terminals depending on their distribution and window manager (e.g. GNOME Terminal in GNOME, Konsole in KDE). Consult your Linux distribution’s documentation for details on how to load a terminal.
MacOS users can use the Terminal application, located in the Utilities folder within the Applications folder.
You can use the following command from the terminal window to login into foseres:
You will then be prompted for your password.
When you first log into foseres, you will be prompted to change your initial password.
To allow remote programs, especially graphical applications to control your local display, such as being able to open up a new GUI window (such as for a debugger), use:
ssh -X firstname.lastname@example.org
Some sites recommend using the
-Y flag. While this can fix some
compatibility issues, the
-X flag is more secure.
Current MacOS systems do not have an X window system. Users should install the XQuartz package to allow for SSH with X11 forwarding on MacOS systems:
Logging in from Windows using MobaXterm
A typical Windows installation will not include a terminal client, though there are various clients available. We recommend all our Windows users to download and install MobaXterm to access foseres. It is very easy to use and includes an integrated X server with SSH client to run any graphical applications on foseres.
You can download MobaXterm Home Edition (Installer Edition) from the following link:
Double-click the downloaded Microsoft Installer file (.msi), and the Windows wizard will automatically guides you through the installation process. Note, you might need to have administrator rights to install on some Windows OS. Also make sure to check whether Windows Firewall hasn’t blocked any features of this program after installation.
Start MobaXterm using, for example, the icon added to the Start menu during the installation process.
If you would like to run any small remote GUI applications, then make sure to use -X option along with the ssh command (see above) to enable X11 forwarding, which allows you to run graphical clients on your local X server.
Making access more convenient using the SSH configuration file
Typing in the full command to login or transfer data to foseres can become tedious as it often has to be repeated many times. You can use the SSH configuration file, usually located on your local machine at
.ssh/config to make things a bit more convenient.
Each remote site (or group of sites) can have an entry in this file which may look something like:
Host foseres User username HostName foseres.fost.plymouth.ac.uk ForwardX11 yes ForwardAgent yes
(remember to replace
username with your actual username!).
Host foseres line defines a short name for the entry. In this case, instead of typing
ssh email@example.com to access the foseres login nodes, you could use
ssh foseres instead. The remaining lines define the options for the
Hostname foseres.fost.plymouth.ac.uk- defines the full address of the host
User username- defines the username to use by default for this host (replace
usernamewith your own username on the remote host)
Now you can use SSH to access foseres without needing to enter your username or the full hostname every time:
-bash-4.1$ ssh foseres
You can set up as many of these entries as you need in your local configuration file. Other options are available. See the ssh_config man page (or
man ssh_config on any machine with SSH installed) for a description of the SSH configuration file. You may find the
IdentityFile option useful if you have to manage multiple SSH key pairs for different systems as this allows you to specify which SSH key to use for each system.