I make a good deal of use of the JASMIN science virtual machines, but sometimes I want to just do something locally for testing. Fortunately you can build your own virtual machine using the “ JASMIN Analysis Platform” (JAP) to get the same base files.

Here’s my experience building a JAP instance in a VMware Fusion virtual machine (I have a Macbook, but I have thus far done all the heavy lifting inside a linux mint virtual machine … but the JAP needs a centos or redhat base machine, hence this).

Step One: Base Virtual Machine

We want a base linux virtual machine on which we build the JAP.

  1. Start by downloading a suitable base linux installation (Centos or RedHat). Here is one I got some time ago: CentOS-6.5-x86_64-bin-DVD1.iso
  2. From VMware fusion choose the File>New Option and double click on the “Install from Disc or Image” option and find your .iso from the previous step.
  3. Inside the linux easy install configure your startup account
  4. You might want to configure the settings. I chose to give mine 2 cores and 4 GB of memory and access to some shared folders with the host.
  5. Start your virtual Machine.
  6. (Ignore the message about unsupported hardware by clicking OK)
  7. Wait … do something else …
  8. Login.
  9. (This is a good place to take a snapshot of the bare machine if you have the available disk space. Snapshots take up as much disk as you asked for memory.)

Step Two: Install the JAP

Following instructions from here. There are effectively three steps plus two wrinkles. The three steps are: get the Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux into your config path; get the CEDA JAP linux into your config path; and build. Then the wrinkles: the build currently fails! However, the fixes to make it build are pretty trivial.

  1. Open up a terminal window and su to root.
  2. Follow the three steps on the installation page, then you’ll see something like this:
--> Finished Dependency Resolution
Error: Package: gdal-ruby-1.9.2-1.ceda.el6.x86_64 (ceda)
           Requires: libarmadillo.so.3()(64bit)
Error: Package: grib_api-1.12.1-1.el6.x86_64 (epel)
           Requires: libnetcdf.so.6()(64bit)
               Not found
 You could try using --skip-broken to work around the problem
 You could try running: rpm -Va --nofiles --nodigest

But never fear, two easy fixes are documented here. You need to

  1. Force the install to use the CEDA grib_api, not the EPEL version, You do that by putting

at the end of the first (EPEL) section in the /etc/yum.repos.d/epel.repo file, and

  1. Add the missing (older version of the) armadillo library by downloading the binary rpm on the ticket and installing it locally, then you can redo the final step:
  2. yum install jasmin-sci-vm

And stand back and wait. You’ll soon have a jasmin-sci-vm.