How-to Start an Interactive Job

When you want to work interactively on a compute node

From a login node, invoke,

srun --account=<myPIRG> --pty bash

This will launch a job on the default partition and ssh you to the assigned node.

Optionally, you may pass any of the regular job options to srun. If you wish to specify the partition on which you wish to run, the amount of memory, etc.

For example, to launch a job on the "foo" partition we would invoke,

srun --account=<myPIRG> --partition=foo --pty bash

For a full list of options see man srun

Note that, as with batch jobs, if there are no slots available in the partition you choose, the srun command will wait until one becomes available and then proceed. So, if the command seems to hang, this is probably what is happening.

If you know that you'll only need your interactive shell for a relatively short time (less than 24h), you might want to use the --time flag to specify a shorter time, which will increase the chance that it will be scheduled immediately. 

For example, launch a job with a time limit of 90 minutes,

srun --account=<myPIRG> --pty --time=90 bash

After 90 minutes, if you don't exit sooner, the job will be killed and you will be disconnected from the compute node.

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