We are excited to announce a new service to Dartmouth researchers – DartFS, a next generation storage solution that will provide ample capacity and the ability to access your files in multiple ways from multiple devices.

DartFS will be consolidating and replacing both RStor/AFS and the Discovery storage.

Features:

  • 50GB home directory at no cost for all members of the Dartmouth research community
  • 1TB shared lab directory at no cost for faculty members
  • Accessible directly from your Windows PC, Mac, and Linux desktop and laptop
  • Additional space available for purchase — see pricing below
  • Data access from central or departmental computing environments and the desktop
  • The ability to store and protect data acquired from instrumentation
  • The possibility for a group to manage research data and information for the lab
  • File sharing up to DISC Level 2 with researchers anywhere

DartFS is part of Dartmouth’s new “Research Computing Bill of Rights,” an outgrowth of work done by the 2015 HPC taskforce and the 2013 Subcommittee of the Council on Computing. See more here.

Contact: research.computing@dartmouth.edu

Pricing for additional storage space

  • Standard Performance: $72/TB/year, with SnapShots* $93/TB/year
  • High Performance (HPC): $134/TB/year, with SnapShots* $185/TB/year
*SnapShots protect your data agains accidental deletion/modification by keeping a daily copy for a week, a weekly copy for a month, and a monthly copy for a year.
What is DartFS?
DartFS is the name of the new file system that will be used on all Research Computing HPC resources (Discovery, Andes and Polaris).
DartFS will replace Rstor(AFS) and the Discovery file system (Isilon,NFS) with a single system that will be available to all Research Computing systems as well as users’ desktop Windows, Macintosh and Linux computers.
DartFS is a network-based storage service for documents and files. Each member of Dartmouth’s research community can request a 50GB DartFS private home directory space (named as your Dartmouth NetID). In addition, Dartmouth Faculty members may request a 1TB shared lab space (named using the last name and first initial of the PI, e.g. Prof. Charles Xavier would get a lab share named “XavierC”).

Requirements:

  1. A valid Dartmouth NetID and password;
  2. Request a private home space using the form on rc.dartmouth.edu (Click the Request an account button in the upper right corner);
  3. Faculty can request their shared lab space via email to research.computing@dartmouth.edu and specify:
    1. Their name and department;
    2. The list of lab members and Dartmouth collaborators they wish to grant access to their space. Collaborators can be added at any time by contacting us;
    3. If known, the initial desired folder structure in the shared space as well as the access to grant each lab member on those initial folders.

Expect the creation and provisioning of the space(s) within 3 business days after submitting the request.

If you are accessing DartFS off-campus, you need to establish a VPN connection prior to connecting to DartFS. See http://tech.dartmouth.edu/its/services-support/help-yourself/knowledge-base/vpn-service-overview for more information.

Once you have received confirmation that the space(s) was created, see FAQs below for more information about the service.

What is this RStor(AFS) account I was asked about?

Some of these accounts have been around since 1990 and their owners have long since forgotten about them – so it’s a very reasonable question!  An exhaustive list of the ways these have been used would be very difficult to generate but below are a few of the most common.  Maybe one will jog your memory. If not, contact us and we can tell you things like your username, how much data is in there, and when the account was last used.  We can also reset your password if necessary so you can go take a look at the actual data.

  • Current:  This is your login for the Research Computer linux systems Polaris and Andes.
  • Current:  Standalone data volumes that you access from any machine that has an AFS (or OpenAFS) client installed.
  • Historical:  In the past there have been other Linux/UNIX machines with names like sierra, belknap, grafton, nimbus, and cascade.  Perhaps you used one of them.
  • Historical:  There were also UNIX computers in public locations that we called the northstar workstations.  This account also would have given access to these. Northstar worksations were mostly from a company called SGI and had a distinctive deep blue color.  These were mostly retired by 2008.
Do you have any suggestions for how I should organize my data and manage permissions to it?

Of course we have suggestions! Keep in mind that there is no perfect scheme because so much depends on individual circumstance. But here are some general principles and a few of the more commonly used layouts we have seen.

General Principles

Always use the principle of least privilege. If someone needs to read data from a folder but you don’t want them changing anything then only give them read access – even if that means an extra step to add a new permission for the folder.

Try to keep permission changes near the top of your volume and let them be inherited down from there. It’s very easy to forget about a permission change to a folder that is five layers deep.

Use groups for permissions as much as possible – as opposed to permissions for individual people. This is much easier to manage and we are happy to create new groups for you as needed. The exception to this rule is when there is no chance you will ever want to add the same permission for someone else.

Common layouts – mix and match as appropriate for your needs.

A folder for each person where that person has read/write permissions in their folder but not elsewhere. Often, the rest of the lab group will be given read only permissions to all the other personal folders.

A folder where everyone has read/write and another folder where everyone has read only access.

A folder for each “project”. Depending on how much overlap there is between the people working on different projects, you may want to ask us to create more groups for you to manage the permissions in each project. Often within a project folder there might be separate read/write and read only areas.

What is the difference between my private home DartFS and my lab spaces?

DartFS is your new network-based storage service for documents and files.

Each member of the Dartmouth research community can request a 50GB DartFS private home directory space (named as your Dartmouth NetID). Additionally, Dartmouth Faculty members may request a 1TB shared lab space (name using the last name and first initial of the PI, e.g. Prof. Charles Xavier would get a lab share named “XavierC”).

How do I change the files and folders privileges on DartFS?

You can only change permissions/privileges yourself in DartFS from a Windows (PC) environment. See FAQ on accessing DartFS from Windows for more help. Please contact Research Computing if you do not have access to a Windows PC, and we will be happy to help you.

Privileges you can grant:

You can grant per file/folder and per Dartmouth user/group privileges. In other words, you may grant any type of access (read/write/etc.) to any member of the Dartmouth community (with a valid NetID) or Active Directory group (previously defined group of users).

Available privileges for each file/folder are:

  • Full control — read/write/execute plus the ability to modify permissions
  • Modify — read/write/execute
  • Read & execute — but not write/modify
  • List folder contents — same as Read & execute but with a different name when applied to a folder
  • Read — but not write/modify or execute
  • Write — but not read or execute (dropbox)

Once the privileges have been granted, the grantee can access the DartFS volume using his/her own set of credentials and perform the actions you have authorized immediately.

You can edit the privileges of existing Active Directory users (i.e. have a NetId) and existing AD groups. To create new groups for your users, please e-mail us at research.computing@dartmouth.edu

 

From Windows ONLY
Changing permission in DartFS

  1. Open a Windows Explorer window
  2. Click the DartFS mounted volume found under Computer in the left-most panel. The DartFS volumes are name either using your NetID if it is a personal home directory, or named after your lab/PI name if it is a shared lab directory space.
  3. Optional: create a new folder/file
  4. Select the file/folder you would like to share/set privileges to, right-click and select Properties
  5. This window shows the current privileges setting, including user (top panel) and when you select a user, his/her permissions will be displayed in the bottom panel. For simple privileges management, like add/remove users and manage permissions, click on Edit. Note that by default, changes to the selected folder/file cascaded down recursively to all enclosed files and folders (i.e. if you make this folder readable, so will all the files and folder below the current one).

  1. For an existing user/groups, you can select that user and view their current permissions in the lower panel.
  2. To change a user/group’s permissions, select it in the upper panel, then click Edit…, the new window will allow you to Allow and Deny individual permissions
  3. To remove a user, select the user in the upper panel and click on Remove
  4. To add a new user to this directory/file, select Add…
  5. Type the name or NetId of the user or group you would like to add in the bottom object name Note that if you use the user’s name, you have to use their full name, including their middle initial. Alternatively, you can use https://dndlookup.dartmouth.edu/ to lookup the NetId of partial name matches. Existing Active Directory group names can be partial. We’ll be happy to create groups for your users.

  1. Click Check Names. If a match is found in Active Directory, the name will be capitalized and underlined. Otherwise, you will get a new window asking you to re-type the “object name” (i.e. user or group). This is why we recommend using NetId matches.
  2. Once the user was added, you can view/change the file/folder privileges in the lower panel. Again, by default, changes will be cascaded down recursively to all file/folders below the currently select folder. The Advanced button to allows you to change the cascading behavior as well as other more advanced features.

 

To check the permission or if you need further assistance, please e-mail us at research.computing@dartmouth.edu

How to access DartFS from an Apple Macintosh computer (desktop or laptop)?

Accessing Your DartFS Private Home Directory Space (named as your Dartmouth NetID)

  1. Click Finder to make it the active application, then click Go from the menu bar.
  2. Click Connect to Server.
  3. In the Server address field type
    smb://netid@dartfs-hpc.dartmouth.edu/rc/home/x/netid
    where x (lowercase) is the last character of your NetID (also lowercase). For example, if your NetID is “d12345e” the server address will be
    smb://d12345e@dartfs-hpc.dartmouth.edu/rc/home/e/d12345e

  4. Add DartFS to your Favorite Servers by clicking the + button; explore the Server Address history by using the clock button. You may choose to remember the password in the Keychain.
  5. Click Connect.
  6. Next, you are prompted for your credentials. The username field will already have your Dartmouth NetID. In the password field, enter your Dartmouth email account password that is associated with your NetID.
  7. If you would like DartFS to be automatically available after you restart your computer:
    1. From the Finder, open the Finder Preferences by hitting Command-Comma (,) (⌘,).
    2. Click the General tab.
    3. Click the checkbox next to Connected Servers.
    4. Close Finder Preferences.
    5. Open System Preferences then User & Groups.
    6. Click your name in the Current User left panel.
    7. Select Click the lock to make changes and enter the password for your Mac Admin account when prompted.
    8. Click the Login Items tab.
    9. Drag and drop the mounted volume icon (blue background, white stick figures holding hands) with your NetID to the Login Items list.
  8. To access your DartFS folder using the Finder:
    1. Click dartfs-hpc.dartmouth.edu under Shared in the right-most panel.
    2. Navigate to home then x then <<Your NetID>>.
    3. Drag and drop your DartFS (NetID) folder to left-most panel under Favorites to create a shortcut and facilitate access.

Accessing your DartFS Lab Shared Directory Space (named after your PI)

  1. Click Finder to make it the active application, then click Go from the menu bar.
  2. Click Connect to Server.
  3. In the Server address field type
    smb://netid@dartfs-hpc.dartmouth.edu/rc/lab/X/LastNameI 
    where X (uppercase) is the first letter of your PI’s last name, and the LastNameI your PI’s last name and first initial, and netid is your NetID.  For example Prof. Charles Xavier’s lab share is named “XavierC” so the server address will be
    smb://netid@dartfs-hpc.dartmouth.edu/rc/lab/X/XavierC. 
    Note: 
    the server address may differ (e.g. miss the “-hpc” part) depending on the performance tier your space is provisioned in.
  4. Add DartFS to your Favorite Servers by clicking the + button; explore the Server Address history by using the clock button. You may choose to remember the password in the Keychain.
  5. Click Connect.
  6. Next, you are prompted for your credentials. The username field already has your Dartmouth NetID (not your PI’s). In the password field, enter your Dartmouth email account password that is associated with your NetID.
  7. If you would like DartFS to be automatically available after you restart your computer:
    1. From the Finder, open the Finder Preferences by hitting Command-Comma (,) (⌘,).
    2. Click the General tab.
    3. Click the checkbox next to Connected Servers.
    4. Close Finder Preferences.
    5. Open System Preferences then User & Groups.
    6. Click your name in the Current User left panel.
    7. Click the Login Items tab.
    8. Drag and drop the mounted volume icon (blue background, white stick figures holding hands) with your NetID to the Login Items list.
  8. To access your DartFS folder using the Finder:
    1. Click dartfs-hpc.dartmouth.edu under Shared in the right-most panel.
    2. Navigate to rc then lab then X then XavierC.
    3. Drag and drop your DartFS (NetID) folder to left-most panel under Favorites to create a shortcut and facilitate access.

Contact Research Computing for more information.

Why can’t I delete, rename, or edit certain files on the Mac?

Macs have the concept of “flags” which live alongside filesystem permissions for a file.  In particular they have a “read only” flag that trumps whatever the filesystem says a user’s or group’s access is supposed to be.  If this flag is set on a file, you cannot rename, delete, or edit that file even though you would be able to on a Windows or Linux machine.  Other BSD based systems also respect this flag including the Isilon itself which is why it matters for DartFS.

The reason this should be a FAQ (or at least an OAQ) is that there are
Mac tools that set this flag.  RCS (version control) is one example and
there may be others.

On the Mac, you can see if this flag is set by using the -O option to
‘ls’.  It will show up as ‘uchg’.  To manually remove it, use

‘chflags nouchg file’

How to access DartFS from a Windows PC (desktop or laptop)?

Accessing Your DartFS Private Home Directory Space (named as your Dartmouth NetID)

  1. Click the Start or Windows menu icon (bottom left corner of the desktop).
  2. In the search text field, type Run. In Windows 10, just start typing run if the search field is missing.
  3. Select and click the Run application found towards the top of the menu.
  4. In the Open text field, type \\dartfs-hpc\rc\home\x\netid where x (lowercase) is the last character of your NetID (also lowercase). For example: \\dartfs-hpc\rc\home\e\d12345e.
  5. If prompted for your username/password, use your NetID/password as follow. You may have to click on Use another account to edit/add the username.
    1. In the Username field, enter Kiewit\<<your NetID>>. For example, Kiewit\D12345E.
    2. In the Password field, enter the password associated with your NetID.
    3. Check the Remember my credentials or Store my password box.
    4. Click OK.

To save a shortcut to DartFS on your desktop:

  1. Open a Windows Explorer window.
  2. In the left most panel, click Network.
  3. Navigate to your DartFS home folder (e.g. rc then home then x then your NetID).
  4. Right-click the folder named after your NetId in the address bar at the top of the Explorer Window.
  5. Click Copy address from the menu that appears.
  6. Right click on your desktop then click Paste shortcut from the menu that appears.

    A new shortcut icon appears on your desktop leading directly to your DartFS home directory.

Accessing your DartFS Lab Shared Directory Space (named after your PI)

The steps are identical as above, except for the Folder \\dartfs-hpc\rc\lab\X\LastNameI where X (uppercase) is the first letter of your PI’s last name, and the LastNameI is your PI’s last name and first initial. For example, Prof. Charles Xavier’s lab share is named “XavierC” and the server address will be \\dartfs-hpc.dartmouth.edu\rc\lab\X\XavierC.

Contact Research Computing for more information.

How do I connect to DartFS from Linux?

DartFS is available via two different protocols: NFS and SMB. Linux can mount DartFS volumes with either but for Linux workstations we recommend using SMB because it is less complicated. This FAQ only addresses SMB mounts. Please contact Research Computing directly if you need NFS.

To mount a DartFS volume from SMB you really only need a single command. Warning: you need to run this from a root shell or have sudo privileges for the mount command.

# mount -t cifs -o username=f123456,domain=KIEWIT.DARTMOUTH.EDU \
-o vers=3.0,file_mode=0660,dir_mode=0770,uid=localme \
//dartfs-hpc.dartmouth.edu/rc/lab/I/ImaginaryLab /mnt
Password for f123456@//dartfs-hpc.dartmouth.edu/rc/lab/I/ImaginaryLab: **********

The example mounts “//dartfs-hpc/rc/lab/I/ImaginaryLab” on the mount point “/mnt” using the NetID credential for “f123456”. “localme” is your username locally on the Linux system.  Replace those elements of the command with appropriate values for your situation. The backslashes ‘\’ in this command are for line continuation because the command is too long to fit on one line. You can omit them and put it all on one line.

If it works, you should be able to change to the /mnt directory and see all your files.

Troubleshooting error messages:

  • “mount: only root can do that” means that you forgot to become root (or use sudo) before running the command.
  • “mount: unknown filesystem type ‘cifs’” usually means that you do not have SMB support installed on your Linux system.
  • “Couldn’t chdir to /mnt: No such file or directory” means that you forgot to create the mount point. /mnt exists by default on most Linux systems but if you choose a different location you will need to create it first.
  • “mount error: could not resolve address for …” means you have a typo in the server name piece of the DartFS location
  • “mount error(2): No such file or directory” (after being prompted for your password) usually means that you have a typo in the path piece of the DartFS location.

If all else fails, you can try checking that the “rc” shares are visible to your machine. This should work for both dartfs and dartfs-hpc.

# smbclient -U f123456@KIEWIT.DARTMOUTH.EDU -L dartfs-hpc
Enter f123456@KIEWIT.DARTMOUTH.EDU’s password:
OS=[Unix] Server=[Isilon OneFS]
Sharename Type Comment
——— —- ——-
rc Disk HPC homes and 1TB Labs
[ignore the errors that appear here]

For more information, please contact Research Computing.

What are options within DartFS?

Faculty may opt to purchase storage in varying performance tiers and with varying protection levels to meet their needs.  Click here to view current options.

How can I delete my Research Computing/AFS/Rstor/Discovery/DartFS account?

There is no automatic way of deleting any of your accounts, please fill out a Help Request or contact us directly.