Getting Started with the BRC/U Linux Cluster

Applying for Cluster Access

Access to the BRC/U cluster is granted on a user-by-user basis. If you would like to apply for access, please complete this form. It can take up to a month to process applications, so if you are planning to use the cluster for a project, we recommend you apply well in advance of the project start date.

VPN Tokens

The BRC/U Linux cluster is currently housed at the South London and Maudsley NHS Trust DataCentre, which is on the NHS network. Two-factor authentication is required to access the cluster. This means you will need a SLaM VPN token. If you have not received a token within a month of your application, please contact us. If you have any problems with your token, more information about the tokens can be found here.


Use of the BRC/U cluster requires basic familiarity with the Linux command line. If you’ve used Linux before and just need a quick refresher on the command line, take a look at our linux command line primer.

If Linux is completely new to you, you should consider taking an introductory course. You will find it much easier to use the cluster if you understand the basics of how the linux filesystem is structured, how file permissions work and so on. The BRC/U periodically runs an Introduction to Linux course, so keep an eye on our Events page. We will consider running additional courses if there is enough demand, so let us know if you are waiting for a course to be scheduled. The Linux Foundation also provides a course on EdX, which you can audit for free: LFS101x: Introduction to Linux. This will give you some background about Linux and Open Source development. It will also show you how to install a Linux distribution yourself and teach you some command line tools and basic bash scripting. And you can get a nice certificate to put on your CV!

Using the Cluster

Connecting to the Cluster

Using Grid Engine to Run Jobs on the Cluster




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