Accessing the HPC Machines

This page details the process of logging into the machines. Links to the documentation pages for each machine are listed at the bottom of the page.


Getting Access

To gain access to the HPC machines, a formal application is needed. The process is explained at the User Access page or by clicking on the Access at the website's banner.


Logging In

Logging into the machine involves the use of Secure Shell (SSH) in a terminal. SSH login is available natively to Linux or Mac OSX (or any UNIX-based systems). On Windows machines an SSH client is needed, for example, PuTTY.

ssh <username>@<machinename>

Replace <username> with your registered username and <machinename> with the specific machine name.

The machine names are:

  •   - Abel
  • - Hexagon
  • - Stallo
  • - Vilje
  • - Fram

For example, if the username is myname, the login commands are:



Storage supercomputers

Access to the Project data storage area is through front-end (login) nodes. Users must be registered and authorized by the project responsible before obtaining access.


Resource Server URI (access point) Purpose
norstore-osl front-end general
norstore-osl (high perf) general, not hpn-ssh enabled

To access or transfer data to one of these resources, use the following commands: ssh, scp or stfp.

It might take a working hour or day until you can log in after receiving access or a new password:

  • Abel updates once per day.
  • Hexagon, Norstore, Stallo and Vilje update once per hour.
X11 Forwarding and Graphical Logins

With X11 forwarding, it is possible to run graphical applications on the machines and see the applications on your local computer. To enable X11 forwarding, use either the -X or -Y options.

ssh -X -Y

Windows users need to install a separate X server. Xming is a free option and instructions are at the Michigan Tech site.

Alternatively, Stallo has a graphical login and instructions are found at


Development Environment

Abel, Stallo and Fram runs CentOS Linux distributions as operating system, while Hexagon and Vilje runs SUSE Linux Enterprise.

The machines can run C/C++ or Fortran OpenMP and MPI applications, and depending on the machine, various open-source and third party applications.

Unix CLI

It is expected that the user is familiar with command-line interfaces (CLI), but for those who are not familiar with commands, the UiB and UiT pages have several tutorials on the CLI environment:

To copy files from your machine to the HPC machines, use SSH File Transfer Protocol (SFTP) and Secure Copy (SCP). They are available as command-line tools for Linux and MacOS X but Windows users need to download a separate SCP or FTP client, such as WinSCP.

For example, to copy projectfiles.tar.gz to the home directory of myusername to Vilje, type:

scp projectfiles.tar.gz


More Information

The following pages take you to the individual machines' user guides. There, you can find information about development on each machine.