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Status Update of Computing @ Berkeley Astronomy

19 February 2015: Matlab version R2014b is installed for use by 64 bit Linux: /apps/matlab_r2014b/bin/matlab

December 2014: IDL version 8.4 installed for use by Linux: IDL_DIR=/apps3/rsi/idl_8.4
See Setting Up Your IDL Environment

24 November 2014: Mathematica version 10.0 is now available on departmental servers at /apps3/linux-apps/Mathematica_10.0/bin/mathematica

21 November 2014: IDL version 8.4 is now available on departmental servers at /apps3/rsi/idl_8.4/bin/idl. You will need to select the appropriate license file.
See Setting Up Your IDL Environment

22 August 2014: The Anaconda Python distribution is now on servers morph, sirius and lupus in /usr/local/anaconda. To pick up the packages, use (depending on your shell):
setenv PATH "/usr/local/anaconda/bin:${PATH}"
export PATH=/usr/local/anaconda/bin:${PATH}

23 April 2014: IDL version 8.3 installed for use by Linux, MacOS: IDL_DIR=/apps3/rsi/idl_8.3
See Setting Up Your IDL Environment

10 February 2014: now online with 32 cores, 256GB memory - please send mail to Bill Boyd for ssh access

January 2014: The old HP printer color has been replaced by the multifunction Canon iR-ADV 5235 (i.e. the copier in HFA-B).

17 October 2013: IRAF v2.16 now installed for use by 64 bit Linux: /apps3/linux-apps/iraf/iraf/

To run under tcsh:
setenv iraf /apps3/linux-apps/iraf/iraf/
source $iraf/unix/hlib/irafuser.csh

23 September 2013: Matlab version R2013b is installed for use by 64 bit Linux: /apps/matlab_r2013b/bin/matlab

19 August 2013: The printer p433 is now a HP LaserJet 600 M602.

15 January 2013: now online with 32 cores, 256GB memory - send mail to Bill Boyd for access

05 January 2013: Matlab version R2012b is installed for use by 64 bit Linux: /apps/matlab_r2012b/bin/matlab

9 October 2012: IDL version 8.2 installed for use by Linux, Mac: IDL_DIR=/apps3/rsi/idl_8.2
See Setting Up Your IDL Environment

27 March 2012: IDL version 8.1 installed for use by Linux, Mac: IDL_DIR=/apps3/rsi/idl_8.1
See Setting Up Your IDL Environment

June 2011: The printers color2 and colord are now model HP Color Laserjet CP4525dn

02 May 2011: Matlab version R2011a is installed for use by 64 bit Linux: /apps3/matlab_r2011a/bin/matlab

03 Jan 2011: Matlab version R2010B is installed for use by 64 bit Linux: /apps3/matlab_r2010b/bin/matlab

01 Dec 2009: Mathematica version 7 installed for use by Linux: /apps3/linux-apps/mathematica/mathematica

25 Nov 2009: Matlab version r2009a installed for use by Linux, Intel Mac (Leopard+): /apps1/mathworks_r2009a/bin/matlab

07 Mar 2009: NIS+ server shut off; All Sun hardware and Solaris operating systems are no longer maintained with the exception of

09 Dec 2008: The printer p665 has been upgraded to an HP Laserjet 5200.

02 Dec 2008: The printer p709 has been upgraded to an HP Laserjet P4015n.

14 Nov 2008: The printer p433 has been upgraded to an HP Laserjet P4015n.

4 Nov 2008: The printer p544 has been upgraded to an HP Laserjet 5200.

16 Oct 2008: The printer color is now online again in the form of an HP Color LaserJet 3000 (just like color2).

21 May 2008: Installed Kompozer (updated NVu HTML editor) for linux in /apps2/linux/apps/kompozer

21 Feb 2008: DS9 updated to version 5.1 in both /apps and /apps2/linux-apps. The old versions are now in directories named ds9v4.

6 December 2007: The Linux version of wcstools has been installed in /apps2/linux-apps/wcstools

12 October 2007: The Linux LaTeX editor kile has been installed in /apps2/linux-apps/kile/bin/kile

8 Dec 06: An updated version of the Astronomy Proposal Tool for HST has been installed. It will run on versions of linux and Solaris 8 and above. Solaris users, the program is /apps1/APT160/runAPT, Linux users, the program is /apps2/linux-apps/APT160/runAPT. NOTE: Solaris 7 cannot run this software, if you have a Solaris 7 computer on your desk, please slogin into meso to run the code.

19 Sep 06: Spam and you: I strongly advise users no longer whitelist_from * as it would appear that many spammers have taken to forging their from email address with this domain. We are currently looking at possible solutions, but mostly the only reason this ends up in your mailbox is because of the above whitelisting practice.

22 Aug 06: Early this morning, astro ran out of space in its root directory, which ended up causing all sorts of services it performs to malfunction. This includes the web server and email server. All has been repaired, but users that forwarded their email should check their inbox on the astronomy network to make sure they didn't miss anything important from around 1:30am until 8:30am this morning.

15 Aug 06: /backup04 is online once again.

14 Aug 06: /backup04 still undergoing file system repair process. Best estimate is Wednesday it will be online again (just takes a lot of time to check 1.3 terabytes of data).

11 Aug 06: /backup04 is not accessible at the present time, I am working on correcting errors in its file system and it may take all weekend (this resulted from the disk failures the array received during the past month).

28 Jun 06: Mathematica 5.2 has been installed on the astronomy network.  To run it on the suns, you will need to add /apps2/Wolfram/Mathematica/5.2/Executables to your PATH, then you would run mathematica by typing the command /apps2/Wolfram/Mathematica/5.2/Executables/mathematica.  See Bill for help getting it running on a linux or mac os x computer.

8 Jun 06:  IDL 6.3 has been installed for all linux and solaris based computers.  To run it, users will need to make modifications to their environment variables, such as IDL_DIR, to point to the new root directory of idl 6.3, which is /usr/local/rsi/idl_6.3 in most cases.  Users may also need to change their LM_LICENSE_FILE environment variable to point to the new license file, /usr/local/rsi/idl_6.3/license/license.dat

5 Jun 06:  Have had to disable all ftp servers on all Sun Solaris computers as a new exploit has been used to cause them to be compromised.  Hopefully we can find a solution to allow us to turn the ftp services back on, but it may require changing from using a solaris based ftp service to some opensource version.  I will keep you all posted.  In the meanwhile, all of the ftp services on linux boxes are still active.

16 May 06: The poster printing instructions have been updated.

09 May 06: All department printers (p433, p544, p665, p709, color, photo and poster) are now being served via (aka  This change has been made on all computers maintained by central, if you have a Mac or PC or laptop you have been printing via to the above printers and it has ceased to function, please check through the Mac FAQ and Windows FAQ for info about how to make printing work again.

08 May 06: Printer p665 is now being served by (aka in a similar manner as p433, p544, and p709.  Also, all of these printers will only print duplex (double sided) now, this will be the situation until we can figure out how to get all systems to support user selectable simplex or duplex.

05 May 06: The printers p433, p544, and p709 are no longer using as their print server, please change all settings on your macs, laptops, etc, computers you are administrating, so that these printers are sending jobs through or (these are the same system).

NOTE: p544d and p655d queues on the linux machines do not function.  Please do not use them
at the present time.

03 May 06: The printer photo has been upgraded to an HP Business Inkjet 2800.  It is served by chandra, not astron, so Mac users will need to modify their printer configurations if they include this printer.  The default tray (Tray 1) now contains photo paper and Tray 2 contains plain white paper.  To print transparencies, contact central@astro.

28 Apr 06: Clamassassin has been installed on our new email server.  To use it, see the note in the
Using Spamassassin web page.  It will label all email containing known viruses and phishing scams
so that you can filter them out of your inbox.

26 Apr 06:  Main mail server and web server for the department changed to a new computer overnight.  Users
of the POP service on will need to change their incoming server name to  Or, you can switch to using IMAP on  Please see Setting Up Mail Clients to Use the Astronomy IMAP Server for configuration information, or you can ask for help from Bill and he will see what he can do.

24 Apr 06:  Installed a new version of MATLAB.  Please use the new version from now on, it is invoked with the following command:  /apps1/matlab_r2006a/bin/matlab.  This is true on all solaris and linux systems that mount /apps1.

19 Apr 06:  We have changed the computer that acts as our department web server and mail server.  Please note that if you use POP or APOP to read your email from your account, you will need to change your server name in your mail client settings to  The machine that is now does not have a POP server running on it.  Additionally, please check that any bookmarks or favorites entries you have for the Astronomy dept web pages use instead of (this will avoid problems when we shut off the web server on

11 Apr 06:  Users can now print to departmental printers via the samba server on irk. Instructions for Mac users will be posted soon (feel free to ask Bill at bboyd@astro until then).

22 Feb 06: The whole 128.32.92 subnet is now behind a firewall.  All outgoing traffic is currently permitted, but incoming traffic has been restricted to certain common ports.  If you wish to run X applications on machines outside the department, you will need to connect with "ssh -X" to enable X11 port forwarding.  If you require a specific port to be opened to your machine, or if an application that you always use has suddenly developed problems since 22 February, please speak with Bill.

13 Feb 06: Astron had ran out of swap space because of a runaway web process (at least that is the best guess right now). Email is currently being processed as quickly as astron can do so. Sorry about any inconvenience this may have caused.

2 Feb 06:  The web server on now supports PHP with MySQL client functions.  For information on how to use PHP in your web pages, see

1 Nov 2005: installed the non-commercial version of the Intel Fortran compiler for Linux. Please see this link for a quick how-to use it.

14 Oct 05. Added a new email archive to contain all US-CERT bulletins on computer security.

Gemini Phase I proposal tool is installed for Solaris. Users start it with the command /apps2/PIT/solaris/ The corresponding Linux software is installed as well, it is started with the command /apps2/PIT/linux/

Recently installed VNC Server on windows PC in 501B.  Please click here for instructions on how to
use it from your SUN or LINUX PC.

Note regarding SAMBA access: samba users can only access it from within the Astronomy subnetwork (128.32.92.) or via the AirBears access points inside Campbell Hall.

We are in the process of putting firewalls in front of all of our networked printers, this is in order to 1) prevent them from receiving network traffic that causes them difficulties and 2) to make certain that the only network traffic they receive for printing is from astron.

A correction regarding email services in the department. Policy is that we are not requiring users to cease using email via their address or using email on supported computers using supported software in the department. What we are strongly advising is for users that wish Web-based email access/IMAP or wish to access their email through methods other than through supported computers using supported software will need to use calmail and forward their email to that account.

We have recently added a SAMBA service to the network that will allow anyone with an account to access file systems that are on the linux/solaris computing network via a Windows Share (smb). This will work with Macs, PCs running Windows, linux, etc. Please see me or Bill to set up an account if you wish to use the service.

A new version of MatLab has been installed, please run matlab 7 with the following command: /apps2/matlabr14_sp2/bin/matlab.

Just installed a newer version of GNUplot on all solaris computers. It is version 4.0 and has lots of neat, new features.

Newer version of Solaris Forte 6 compilers for f77, f90, f95, c and c++ have been installed. You will need to adjust your environment to make use of them, substituting all occurances of /opt/SUNWspro or /apps/SUNWspro with /apps2/SUNWspro in your startup files.

New backup service being provided for Mac OS X users.

AirBears has been activated in Campbell Hall. Please remember the following conditions of use: Any problems you experience with it should be directed to the support at airbears web site and there will not be any printing to Astronomy network printers allowed from laptops or any other computers connected via airbears in Campbell Hall.

It is required that all new computers purchased after 1 May 2004 also have a minimal capacity Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) to help prevent catastrophic failures during building power outages. It is also advised that this be done with existing computing hardware as well, on an as convenient basis. Please see Bill Boyd for advice on what UPS systems to purchase.

To suggest changes, additions, clarifications in this documentation, contact Central Services.