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High Performance Computing

High-Performance Computing (HPC) is a standard of computing that far exceeds the conventional desktop. While modern consumer-grade computers are capable of a great many tasks, there are always new questions and problems that become possible as the limits of computational speed grows. The world of High-Performance Computing achieves such speeds through the use of a network of powerful machines. By coordinating a task between multiple computers, especially ones of considerable power, the task's completion time depletes by magnitudes. Problems that may take a normal computer millions of years to solve become possible in a few days. In a lot of ways, users are afforded huge creative liberty in terms of computational research.

How It Works

Diagram showing the process of using computing cluster through the use of steps and arrows that are explained in following numbered list.
  1. From Your Computer
    The two primary ways to interact with our computing clusters are over a command-line interface (such as Terminal, Command Prompt, or PuTTY) or by using the web browser on your computer.
  2. Connect to UWEC Network
    For security, we require all users to be on the UW-Eau Claire network before being able to access our computing infrastructure. This can be done by either being physically on campus, or by using GlobalProtect to connect to the university's VPN.
  3. Entry Point - Login Node or OnDemand
    When you connect to a cluster, you'll either be using the Login Node or OnDemand. This is where you'll be able to do almost all of your main interactive work, such as accessing your files, submitting your calculations to be processed, and reviewing your program's final calculations.
  4. Submit Your Work
    We have a variety of scientific software already installed on our computing clusters for you to use, such as Gaussian, RAxML-NG, and Python. Once you have your program ready to go, we use a system called Slurm that will queue up your work and coordinate running it on one of our many available compute nodes until it's complete. 
  5. Get Results
    Once your program finishes running, Slurm will email you letting you know that the results of your completed calculations are available for download.

Ready To Get Started?

Get Started

HPC @ UW-Eau Claire

High-Performance Computing can be used in a variety of ways and here at UW-Eau Claire, we continue to see an increase of its use across campus. Check out these two pages below and see how HPC is used to benefit many different types of research projects as well as learn how it has impacted student's education in the classroom.

Students working with the cluster

Research + HPC

New discoveries are constantly being made by our researchers that come from a variety of different departments on campus. See their work and learn how high performance computing has accelerated scientific research.

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Sudeep Bhattacharyay in computational chemistry class

HPC in the Classroom

Through the use of presentations, homework assignments, and exams, see how learning and supercomputers come together to bring new experiences to our undergraduate students right in the classroom.

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