Using multiple cores (CPUs) to analyze data is an efficient way to get more work done in less time. But this is true only under certain circumstances. By default, R, Python, and MATLAB can only use one core even on a multicore (multiCPU) machine, unless you specifically program them to use more. Stata, on the other hand, has been parallelized, so many of its functions can use more than one core, but only to a maximum of 75% efficiency overall. To get the most efficiency, its best to run your 'do' files in batch; if using the interactive GUI, Stata spends
If you are using project spaces and home folders on the research storage (part of the HBS compute grid), it is likely that you will need to access these while not on the HBS campus. If you are mapping drives or mounting shared folders, the default settings in both Windows and Mac OS may be working against you, as the OS will try to present the files to you with an icon of the contents. This takes much more time to display in Finder or Explorer windows that simple generic file icons, especially over the VPN. Read more about Compute Grid Tip of the Month - April 2017
Using the HBS Compute Grid is a great opportunity to scale your research beyond what you can do on a desktop or laptop. But, as a shared resource, we all have a responsibility to use the resources appropriately. The biggest impediment we face is Grid users over-requesting RAM and CPUs: once requested and allocated, these are not returned to the general pool until your job has finished or you have quit your program in the interactive session (the programs from the Applications drop-down menu in NoMachine). So, if you ask for more resources than your job or program needs, those “extra” resources are, in effect, wasted/unavailable to be used by other users. Please help other users out by choosing your resources efficiently when running jobs and program (“Take What You Need, but Need What You Take”). Read more about Compute Grid Tip of the Month - March 2017
The Unix terminal is a very customizable environment. One easy customization is to change your static, uninformative default bash command prompt "[jharvard@researchgrid]$" to update and show you where you are when you change directories. Please see the HOW-TO on our HBS Research Computing Environment website at http://grid.rcs.hbs.org/change-your-unix-command-prompt-now.