Installing DMF tools on a QRIScloud NeCTAR instance



This article is only relevant to people who have access to a QRISdata collection that is held on HSM, and who have made arrangements to NFS mount it to a NeCTAR instance.

You also need "sudo" access on the instance.

Availability of DMF client tools Installers

HPE do not make the installers for DMF tools publicly available, but UQ RCC has been authorized by HPE to make them available at this location for installation on QRIScloud instances:

There are installers at that location for the following Linux and Unix distros:

  • RedHat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) version 5.x through 7.x
  • SUSE Enterprise Linux Server (SLES) version 10 through 12
  • Solaris

The installers are provided as ".tar.gz" files.  Inside you will typically find installers and instructions on how to use them.  Unfortunately, HPE does not support the DMF client tools for Ubuntu / Debian.

Installation and testing

  1. Ensure that the instance has the collection mounted, and that the mount is working.
  2. Using your preferred web browser, go to the URL above, and select and download the installer that most closely matches your instance's operating system version.
  3. Install the downloaded package using the relevant package installer; e.g. the "rpm" command on RedHat based systems.
  4. Run the "dmls -l" command on the collection's root directory.  You should see the DMF state included in the output for each file.

Compatibility with NeCTAR Linux images

None of the HPE installers precisely match the Linux images supported by NeCTAR.  However I have been told by an HPE engineer that the tools are pretty forgiving.  He mentioned the following:

  • The RHEL RPMs will work on NeCTAR CentOS and Scientific Linux images with the same major version number.
  • It is worth trying to use the "alien" tool to convert RPMs to DEBs and then trying installing the DEBs on Ubuntu or Debian.

DMF client tools versus NFS automount

We have had reports that the DMF client tools do not work with NFS automount / autofs.  However, if you change your automounts to hard mounts, apparently it works reliably. 

(The problem could simply be that the DMF client tools do not trigger automounting.  This implies that running "ls" on your collection's root directory would be a workaround.)

DMF client tools versus /etc/hosts

 We have seen a situation where the DMF client tools failed on a NeCTAR instances following a reboot because the "/etc/hosts" file did not contain an entry that matched the system's hostname.  One symptom was that "dmls -l" reported "No such file or directory" for files and directories that clearly existed.

(The "cloud-init" scripts are supposed to add an entry to "/etc/hosts" for the local hostname.  We suspect that the missing entry was caused by a bug in "cloud-init".)


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