File Systems and Storage on Quest

Tips on managing storage and files on Quest.

Quest has two locations where you may store files: /home/<netid> and /projects/<allocationID>.

Home Directories

As a Quest account holder, you will be given a home directory (/home/<netid>) the first time you log in to the system. All home directories have a fixed quota of 80 GB. Your home directory is only available to you and may not be shared.

Your home directory is a good place to store submission scripts, job log files, and local package and software installations.

Home directories have redundancy built into the storage system. If you inadvertently delete a file from your home directory, immediately contact quest-help@northwestern.edu as it may be possible to restore it. After 24-hours any changes made to your home directory cannot be recovered.

Note: If you leave the University, your home directory will be deleted and cannot be restored. It is recommended to backup whatever you need from your home directory before leaving the University.

You can check how much space you're using in your home directory with du:

du -h --max-depth=0 ~

Project Space

The projects volume consists of high-speed storage and should be used when analyzing large amounts of data on the compute nodes. Your home directory is also reachable by a compute node, however the Input/Output (IO) of your home directory is not optimized as it is for the projects volume.

Each Quest allocation has a projects directory: /projects/<allocationID>. In the projects space anyone belonging to an allocation may be able to read, write, and execute files that belong to other users of that same allocation. There are exceptions to this rule. For example if you sync data from your home directory into a subdirectory in project space, the ownership and group ownership will belong to you. No one else will be able to read your files in project space unless you change the file permissions or the group ownership of your files is changed.

The size of your project directory is determined by the details of your allocation type. A Research Allocation I is usually set up with a 500GB quota on the projects space, and a Research Allocation II may have up to 2TB of space. Researchers requiring additional storage may purchase it by the TB.

Check how much space is used in your projects directory with

checkproject <allocationID>

Temporary Directories

The /tmp directory on compute nodes is intended for temporary files that are used during the execution of a job.  Most compute nodes have 800-900GB of usable temporary space.

It is possible to redirect temporary storage to either /home or /projects space using the $TMPDIR variable. To do this, in your job submission script, you can include the line:

export TMPDIR=/projects/myproject/mytemp

You will need to use this variable for every compute node that a job occupies on Quest.

The Utilities Module

The utilities module can be used to report the resources used in project accounts such as compute hours and storage.

For a listing of commands, please type: module help utilities

----------- Module Specific Help for 'utilities/1' ----------------

Adds Quest utilities to your environment:
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checkproject - report SU balances and disk quotas for your projects
grouplist    - list members of a project group
homedu       - show disk use for HOME subdirectories
homequota    - show disk quota for HOME directory
projectdu    - show disk use for project subdirectories
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7z           - A file archiver with highest compression ratio
average      - Find the average of a set of numbers
duf          - produce a hierarchical listing of disk usage for a directory hierarchy
ediff        - translate diff output into plain English
els          - An Enhanced LS look-alike with many additional features
fdupes       - find and optionally delete duplicate files
jot          - print sequential or random data
lsize        - list file details sorted by size, largest first
numprocess   - This program mutates numbers as it encounters them
numsum       - Takes all the numbers on stdin and returns the sum of those numbers
pkg-config   - Return metainformation about installed libraries
rs           - reshape a data array
seepath      - see status of each component of a path
xz           - XZ lzma2 compression utilities (xz and lzma)
zip          - zip / unzip / zipinfo utilities
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See Also:




Keywords:filesystem, file system, file, storage, Quest, utilities, home directory   Doc ID:70712
Owner:Research Computing .Group:Northwestern
Created:2017-02-15 15:30 CSTUpdated:2018-04-17 16:00 CST
Sites:Northwestern
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