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Archiving User Guide

An Overview (SC stands for Supercomuting Facility)

Archive System Sun x4170 with JBOD SATA storage
Current Capacity 28 TB
Host scarchive1 (Sun x4170). This is an 8-core SMP computer system strictly dedicated to archiving; that is, to direct file transfers to and from SC compute servers to its attached disk storage.
HOME Backups All files in all HOME directories, on all SC compute servers, are backed up nightly to the archive
Account Activation You must activate your archive account before you can use it (for storing non-home files). To do so go to the SC website, click on User Services and select Create/Manage Accounts; next, log on to the Account Management System (ams) and click (on the upper band) Resources and proceed with the activation.
User File Quota 50 GB for non-home resident files
Intended Use Long-term storage for valuable files that were used or generated on any SC compute system. Storage of files that are not directly related to processing on SC systems is not permitted. The website,, contains information on storage policies.
User Access First make sure you have activated your account on the archive (see above). You do this only once. Then, from any SC compute server, issue one of the following commands:

To copy a file to your archive directory, issue

   scp filename  scarchive1:/archive/home/your_username 

To copy a file from the archive to your current directory, issue

   scp scarchive1:/archive/home/your_username/filename  . 

When logged on to scarchive1, you should use the regular cp command

The Sun x4170 archive system uses disk based storage with two SAS attached storage enclosures using one TB SATA drives. User data on this archive is periodically mirrored to a secondary offsite storage archive system. At this time (circa January 2010), the Sun x4170 system's storage capacity is 28 TB. As the demand for archiving dictates, and as funding permits, the SC will progressively increase the disk storage on the Sun storage archive.

Please note that all files in a user's HOME directory are backed up every day. So there is normally no need to explicitly save on the archive any home-resident file. Valuable files, not resident in your home directory, which you must backup on a long-term basis, can be stored on the storage archive.

You can login onto the archive's host, scarchive1, and engage in file management (mkdir, rm, cd, cp, etc.) ONLY. No other processing is permitted.

File Transfers

To send a file from the current working directory on an SC host to your archive directory, issue:

 scp filename scarchive1:/archive/home/your_username 

To recover a file from the archive to your current working directory (".") on an SC host, issue:

 scp scarchive1:/archive/home/your_username/filename .

When logged on to scarchive1, normal copying commands should be used.

Other File Handling

To delete files, make subdirectories in your archive area, and so on, you need to log on to scarchive1 first and proceed from there in normal UNIX fashion.

Batch Use Not Allowed

File transfers involving the archive and batch jobs is not allowed. Direct user access of the archive is predicated on the understanding that the files involved will be infrequently used. When such files are needed in batch jobs, transfer them (interactively!) first from the archive to an area on a SC machine.

Beyond Your Quota

Exceeding your 50 GB quota requires prior permission from the SC staff. All high quota requests will be referred to the Steering Committee for approval.