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Revision as of 22:39, 22 August 2016

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HiPerGator 2.0 documentation

Please see the Xpra page for full documentation. This page provides instructions for Windows clients only.

Step 1: Software Installation


XP and Newer

Download and install MS Windows files: from https://xpra.org/, Installer file can be found at https://xpra.org/dists/windows/Xpra_Setup.exe. Note that installation will require an account with Admin privileges.


In addition to Xpra, you will need an X11 application, such as MobaXterm or the combination of Xming and PuTTY.

MobaXterm can be downloaded here: http://mobaxterm.mobatek.net/


The GUI nodes are accessible only on the UF network. If you are working off campus, you will need to use the VPN to connect to the network. Please see: https://vpn.ufl.edu for additional information.

Step 2: Login to HiPerGator and start the application through a job script

Get the script ready

The simplest way to start a GUI application session on HiPerGator is to use the wrapper scripts in a job script. For example, a SLURM job script can have the following commands below the '#SBATCH' section to start the emacs editor GUI under Xpra inside the job:

Download the [{{#fileLink: rstudio}} xpra rstudio script]. {{#fileAnchor: rstudio}}

#SBATCH --job-name="RStudio"
#SBATCH --output rstudio-%j.out
#SBATCH --partition=gui
#SBATCH --ntasks=1
#SBATCH --mem-per-cpu=2gb
#SBATCH --time=04:00:00
##SBATCH --account=
##SBATCH --qos=
date; hostname; pwd;

module load gui rstudio

xpra_start rstudio --dpi=76


There are other example scripts in the $HPC_GUI_JOB directory loaded with the gui module:

$ module load gui
launch_emacs.sh   launch_rstudio.sh   launch_trackvis.sh
launch_matlab.sh  launch_template.sh

Feel free to copy these to your directory to use as a template to get started:

$ module load gui
$ cp $HPC_GUI_JOB/*.sh .

See also Matlab GUI job script for an example.

Submit the job script

sbatch launch_rstudio.sh

Identify actyive Xpra sessions

After submitting the job, and verifying that it has started (qsueue -u username), you need to determine the Xpra session information.


will refresh the Xpra session list and provide a convenient list of live Xpra sessions as well as commands that can be copied and pasted into a terminal on the client machine.

$ module load gui
$ xpra_list_sessions 


Refreshing the session list for jdoe to remove stale sessions

Re-probing existing xpra sessions for jdoe:
Found the following xpra sessions:
        LIVE session at :2647
        LIVE session at :5727

Xpra session status for jdoe have been refreshed.

Xpra sessions for jdoe:
        Connection command: xpra attach ssh:jdoe@i21a-s3.rc.ufl.edu:2647
        Connection command: xpra attach ssh:jdoe@i21a-s3.rc.ufl.edu:5727

You can use the connection commands posted in the output on your client machine as described next.

Step 3: Connect to Xpra Session from the client side

Microsoft Windows

In a new MobaXtarm tab, navigate to the install location of xpra (normally C:\Program Files (x86)\Xpra\).

In MobaXterm
cd "/drives/c/Program\ Files\ \(x86\)/Xpra/"

Copy and past the line from xpra_list_sessions and add a "./" before it:

./xpra attach ssh:jdoe@i21a-s3.rc.ufl.edu:5727

Remember that if you are outside the UF network, you will need to use the VPN for this step.

If you close the window using the close button, this will exit your application just like a native application. If you want to simply detach the session and come back later, please follow the detaching xpra session instructions below

Step 4: Detaching Xpra Session

These instructions allow you to detach a running xpra client without closing the application.

  • Start a new console and navigate to the xpra directory as shown above.
  • Run the following command where $USERNAME is your UF GatorLink user-name, $SERVERNAME is the server where your application is running inside xpra, and $PORT is the X11 port you assigned when you started your application.
./xpra detach ssh:$USERNAME@$SERVERNAME:$PORT
cd "C:\Program Files (x86)\Xpra"
./xpra detach ssh:testuser@i21a-s3.rc.ufl.edu:143
If you are using mobaXterm, you can press Control-C in the mobaXterm window to detach, just like using the Linux client.