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Installing the Observing Tool

Version 2015A.1.1.1 of the Gemini Observing Tool was released on December 10, 2014. This is a required update. You will have to reenter any keys. New features are described in the Release Notes.

This page contains instructions for downloading and installing the Gemini Observing Tool (OT). You can install the software on a network of workstations or, for best performance, on individual machines. This machine needs internet access to communicate with databases situated at the Gemini Observatory and with other on-line image and catalog servers. Anyone installing an OT for a multi-user environment should read the site-manager details

If you experience any problems installing or running the OT, please see the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) or known bugs pages for the latest information.

If you are installing the OT for the first time, please read the installation instructions. The OT installation files are located on the Gemini software site.

cautionPre-Upgrade Instructions

The OT stores programs in a local database in each user's home directory. The format of the binary files in this database is specific to each OT version and so they must be converted each time the OT is updated. For the 2015A update we suggest that you export all the programs in the 2014B OT local database to XML files (see the saving and loading help page for more details) for backup and reference. The "Bulk Export to a Selected Directory" option is useful for this.  Old programs may be imported as needed from the XML backups, or keep the 2014B OT for referencing them. We recommend that you download programs afresh from the ODB rather than import them from XML.

Additional Information

It is possible to have more than one version of the OT installed, although this can lead to a higher chance of confusion and problems. Each version of the OT will have its own, independent, local database.  Installing a new OT will not remove the database from the previous version. If you did not export your programs to XML and a new OT suddenly shows that you have nothing in your database, DON'T PANIC! As long as the ~/.jsky/spdb and ~/.ocs15 directories are not deleted then the previous database still exists, and you just need to use the earlier version of the OT to access them, and if needed, export the programs to version-independent XML files.

The auto-update feature is not yet available in the 2015A OT so it must be installed from the distribution files.


Installing the Observing Tool

Distribution files for the following operating systems are available:

  • Windows (XP / Vista / 7 / 8)
  • Linux (Redhat Enterprise or Fedora recommended, likely to be compatible with other distributions)
  • Mac OS X (Leopard, Snow Leopard, Lion, Mavericks, Yosemite)

The OT software is available on the Gemini software site. This is an HTTPD server so you should use your web browser to download the files (follow this link to browse the OT directory). Depending on your browser, right or shift+click to save the file. Alternatively you may request a CD-ROM containing all four operating system versions by e-mailing Bryan Miller (bmilleratgemini.edu).

Using and Installing the OT on Windows

The OT has been extensively tested on Windows XP and 7; the Windows version appears to be very stable. It has not been tested with Windows 8 but we have no reason to believe there will be problems in other Windows versions as long as the Java included in our distribution is used.

Installation:

  • Download the current Windows distribution of the OT from the Gemini software site by right or shift+clicking the file named ot_2015A.1.1.1_windows.exe (~114MB download).
  • The Windows distribution is provided as a Windows executable installer.
  • Use Windows Explorer to display the directory in which you downloaded the installer. You must have at least 157 Mbytes of disk space available to install the OT on Windows.
  • Double-click the installer executable. When the installation is completed, select "Close" to exit the installer.
  • The installation places a "Gemini\Observing Tool\Gemini OT 2015A.1.1.1" folder in your Start menu. Double-clicking Observing Tool from this menu launches the OT.

Results from previous benchmarking of the OT are shown below. Sufficient memory appears to be the most important element affecting performance and, whilst OT will run with less, we suggest a minimum of 2GB of memory and a Core 2 Duo or newer processor when using the OT on the Windows platform.

Using and Installing the OT on Linux

The OT can be used on most recent Linux distributions. It has been extensively tested under RHEL/CentOS 5 and 6 and Fedora up to release 20. We have not heard of any problems on other Linux distributions.

Installation:

  • Download the current Linux distribution of the OT from the Gemini software site by right or shift+clicking the file named ot_2015A.1.1.1_linux64.tar.gz (64-bit) or ot_2015A.1.1.1_linux32.tar.gz (32-bit) (~120MB download).
  • Unpack the distribution: tar -xvfz FILENAME.tar.gz
  • The distribution unpacks into a single directory named "ot_2015A.1.1.1_linux32" or "ot_2015A.1.1.1_linux64".
  • Make sure that the libgnome libraries are installed. These are needed to display file attachments. These can be installed with the following commands:
    Ubuntu/Debian: sudo apt-get install libgnome2-bin
    RedHat-based: sudo yum install libgnome
  • Run the OT. You can use the complete path to the startup script, as shown below (where the $ represents your shell prompt), or you can include that directory in your PATH.
    ${where_you_untarred}/ot_2015A.1.1.1_linux(32 or 64)/ot_2015A.1.1.1

Results from previous benchmarking of the OT are shown below. Sufficient memory appears to be the most important element affecting performance and, whilst OT may run with less, we suggest a minimum of 2GB of memory and a Core 2 Duo or newer processor when using the Observing Tool.

Using and Installing the OT on Mac OS X

The OT can be used on Mac OS X (Leopard and newer releases on Intel processors).

Installation:

  • Download the current OS X distribution of the OT from the Gemini software site by clicking the file named ot_2015A.1.1.1_macos.dmg (~127MB download).
  • The OS X release is provided as a mountable disk image. Simply double click on the disk image to mount it, then drag the Observing Tool icon to the Applications folder, your DeskTop, to the Dock or to any place you find convenient. Double click on the icon to launch the application. 

OT benchmarks

See the PIT installation page for somewhat related Java benchmarks.