How can I, as a user, install software for myself or my project with EasyBuild?

Currently, the software-team in the Metacenter is using the EasyBuild system for installing system-wide software and scientific applications. It is, actually, quite easy (hence the name) and straigt forward for users to do install with the same tool.

There are two distinct scenarios covered in this tutorial; first installations for single user only - placing the software in standard user home folder. Second, installations for a project/group - placing the softeware in a project folder for many to share.

Note that the software install team at the Norwegian Metacenter never do installations in $HOME for users, and preferably not in /cluster/projects.

Installing software in home-folder:

Log in to Fram your preferred way. Note that there is, currently at least, no default modules on Fram. Thus you need to be explicit. The easybuild version changes at least a couple of times a year, so do check what is the available version(s) by typing:

module avail easybuild

Now, as of January 2019, you will see this:

module avail EasyBuild

----------------------- /cluster/modulefiles/all ------------------------

Use "module spider" to find all possible modules.
Use "module keyword key1 key2 ..." to search for all possible modules
matching any of the "keys".

Choose 3.8.1 in this case and load this module by typing:

module load EasyBuild/3.8.1 

Now, we advice to do an install in three steps, first download the sources of your software, then do a test run where you check what will be installed and then the full install.

Say you want to install rjags 4.6, you would need to find out which easybuild easyconfigs that is currently available for that explicit code. This you would find here: A general overview of all community available easyconfigs is available here: In this example we choose the easyconfig for rjags version 4-6 with, compiled with the full intel suite release from second half of 2017 and aimed at R release 3.4.3 (thus the long name of the eb-file).

To download the source of software, type:

eb rjags-4-6-intel-2017b-R-3.4.3.eb --fetch

It may be a good idea to get an overview of what will be installed with the command you are planning to use, this you get by the command:

eb rjags-4-6-intel-2017b-R-3.4.3.eb --dryrun

if this proves sucessfull, then type:

eb rjags-4-6-intel-2017b-R-3.4.3.eb -r

Then the process should go absolutely fine, and you will receive a nice little message on the command line stating that installation succeeded.

Now the software and the module(s) you installed are in a folder called ".local". You can inspect it by typing (note the path!)

cd .local/easybuild

There you should see the following:

build  ebfiles_repo  modules  software  sources

Installing software in project folder:

Do as described above regarding login, loading of the EasyBuild module and considerations regarding what to install.

Then do as follows:

mkdir -p /cluster/projects/nnXXXXk/easybuild
eb rjags-4-6-intel-2017b-R-3.4.3.eb --fetch --prefix=/cluster/projects/nnXXXXk/easybuild
eb rjags-4-6-intel-2017b-R-3.4.3.eb --dryrun --prefix=/cluster/projects/nnXXXXk/easybuild #as mentioned above.

where XXXX is your project id number. When a sucsessful download of sources is made, then type:

eb rjags-4-6-intel-2017b-R-3.4.3.eb --prefix=/cluster/projects/nnXXXXk/easybuild

Note the easybuild folder in the path, this is a tip for housekeeping and not strictly required. This will give the path structure as for the local case, with the software and modulefiles installed in cluster/projects/nnXXXXk/easybuild.

A bit more elegant, since the long and horrid path is used thrice, you may do this:

mkdir -p $projsw
eb rjags-4-6-intel-2017b-R-3.4.3.eb --fetch --prefix=$projsw
eb rjags-4-6-intel-2017b-R-3.4.3.eb --dryrun --prefix=$projsw     

For more advanced settings:

Please check upon options with

eb --help

or read up on the EasyBuild documentation on web.

Using software installed in non-standard path:

The default path for modulefiles only contains the centrally installed modules. Thus, if you want the modulefilesystem to find the software you installed either for your own usage or on behalf of the project group, you need to make the module-system aware of alternative paths.

For the case of install in user-home: (still using the rjags example)

module use .local/easybuild/modules/all 
module avail rjags #Just to check if it is found
module load rjags/4-6-intel-2017b-R-3.4.3

For the case of installing i group/project folder:

module use /cluster/projects/nnXXXXk/easybuild/modules/all
module avail rjags #Just to check if it is found
module load rjags/4-6-intel-2017b-R-3.4.3

For more information about the module system, please see:

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