Math Department Computing Cluster Quick Reference


  1. How to submit a job to the cluster
  2. How to create a job submission file
  3. How to check a jobs status

How to submit a job to the cluster

You need these things:

  1. A program to run
  2. A job submission file
Then run something like
cat job.pbs | qsub

How to create a job submisssion file

A job submission file is a simple text file that does two things. It tells the cluster what resources you will need and it tells the cluster what to run. A sample file looks like this

#PBS -S /bin/sh
#PBS -l nodes=1:ppn=1:matlab,walltime=00:05:00
#PBS -m ea

cd $HOME
matlab -nodisplay -nojvm -r MATLAB_MFILE >& OUTPUT_FILE
nodes should be set to how many different machines (max of 3) you want your job to run on.
ppn is how many processors (cores) you want to use on each requested machine. Each machine has upto 8 available.
walltime is the maximum time in Hours:Minutes:Seconds that your job will run in. You want to overestimate this as the job will be killed if it exceeds this value.
PID is your Math PID.

You will get an email message when your job starts to be executed and when it finishes. Any output from the job will be in your HOME directory.

If you need to have more time added for you job to run, please send an email to with the JobID and how much time you need added.

How to check a jobs status

Run the following command on or