User's Guide VISPA Web Edition

Welcome to the VISPA user's guide. In the following sections you will learn everything necessary to implement your first algorithms or to perform your own data analysis.

In each section you will find several screenshots illustrating the handling of VISPA step by step. Just click on a screenshot, a gallery will open and you can browse through all screenshots.

If you are not only interested in using VISPA including its build in applications but would like to customize it to your own needs, feel free to contact us: vispa@lists.rwth-aachen.de.

Quick Start

To access the VISPA server you can either use a temporary guest account or create your own account.

To perform your first analysis, enter the "CERN" folder, click on the "hello_lepton.py" example and press the "execute" button. Click on the image in the right lower corner to see the results: The momenta of electrons and muons

Use the file browser to navigate through the file system. In your home directory, you will find an examples folder which contains exemplary scripts showing you the usage of python, ROOT, numpy and scipy. Clicking on a script in your file browser will open the file in the code editor in an additional tab. You can run the script by clicking the green execute button.

All VISPA applications can be opened from the drop down menu of the "VISPA Cluster" button.

Guest-Account

The easiest way to try out VISPA is to use a guest account. Just visit https://vispa.physik.rwth-aachen.de/guest-login to get direct access.

Please note that it will not be possible to save data permanently using a guest account. The account including all data will be erased after logout or an hour of inactivity. Please create a personal account to get your own storage space.

Login/Registration

If you already have an account, just type in your username or email-address and password and click on "Sign in" to access the VISPA server. (In case you are asked for a "workspace password", please enter your password again and click on "connect".) Registration:
  • To create your personal account click on "create an account" on the start page of the VISPA server (https://vispa.physik.rwth-aachen.de/server).
  • Specify your username and email-address and click on "Create account". Immediately, a mail will be send to your email-address. To validate your email-address, click on the link in the mail.
  • A new window will open where you can specify your password. (The password has to be at least 8 digits long)
  • After a click on "Set password" you are directly logged in. The next time you need to specify your username or email-address and password to login, as described above.
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Getting Started

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In this section the most often used VISPA applications are presented. An application can be opened using the "workspace"-menu which can be accessed with a click on the "VISPA Cluster" button in the upper menu bar. Each application opens as tab and multiple applications can be opened simultaneously. Most applications provide an application specific menu that can be accessed via left click on the application icon in the tab bar.

Advanced information: For a faster and simpler access to the application menu, menu items can be dragged from the drop-down menu to the application window. If not yet present a new "app menu bar" will appear when a menu entry is dragged. When the background color of the app menu bar changes to green, you can drop it and so create a button in the app menu bar. Change the button's order in the menu bar by dragging them to your preferred position. Remove buttons from the menu while dragging them downwards until the buttons' color switches to red, then release the button.

File browser

The file browser is the default application in VISPA. It opens automatically after logging in and behaves like most file browsers you know from your daily work. You can open an arbitrary number of file browsers in tabs from the workspace menu. The file browser's main menu opens by clicking on the blue folder icon in the current tab.

All standard file operations like open, copy, paste, remove, download or compress are supported and accessible via a right click on the selected file or folder. For touch devices, please use the preferences icon. If you want to download more than one file at once, you have to compress them previously.

You have directly access to readable files with can open readable files with the code editor by clicking in them.

By default a lot of shortcuts, e.g. strg + c for copy, are implemented. A complete list of all shortcuts can be found in the preferences menu. Here, you can also modify the default settings .
Table view Symbol view Right-click-menu right-click-menu
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Code Editor

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The code editor is the fundamental VISPA application for inspecting and editing text files. A lot of features, such as syntax highlighting for all common programming languages and auto save functionality, are provided.

 

In case of python code, the script can be directly executed within the code editor, by a simple click on the appropriate button. At the end of the execution, the terminal output and the output plots are shown on the right side. Click on a plot to view it in detail. In case of non-terminating jobs, those may be aborted by user.

 

Existing files can be opened either from the file browser or within the code editor extension by clicking on 'Open file...'. New and thus empty files are opened for editing by clicking on 'New text file...' in the 'workspace' menu.

 

The preference system can be used to adapt the appearance and handling of the code editor application. E.g. the sizes of the different windows as well as keyboard shortcuts for saving, executing or setting language-specific comments can be adjusted.

Terminal

The terminal application offers the same functionality as its regular desktop counterpart. You can use it to access all features that do not have a GUI implementation yet. E.g. compile your C++ programs or work with repositories.
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Feedback-Button

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VISPA is constantly improved. Please help us by providing your feedback. Just use the "Feedback" button in the upper right corner. If preferred, your can - of course - leave your feedback anonymously.

Preferences System

Making VISPA adjustable to satisfy the users individual taste of the GUI appearance and working style was one of the main design goals of the VISPA platform. In the preference menu, which can be opened from the drop down menu of the upper right corner, all preference settings can be adjusted.

The preferences are grouped by category starting with general preferences of the platform followed by preferences of the individual extensions. You can e.g. adjust all shortcuts to your preferred key combinations, specify the default file browser appearance (symbol or table view) or change the size of the two column layout of the code editor.

Table view Table view
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