HPC doc.

Access Baobab


You need an account on the cluster to be able to access it and to submit jobs to it.

If you don’t have such an account, please request one by sending an email to

Please provide the following informations:

  • your ISIs account
  • the name of your principal investigator (PI)
  • the name of the department you belong to
  • a short description of the intended usage
  • add you PI in cc of the email (so we know the request is done with his/her agreement)


In principle Baobab is reserved for the members of the University of Geneva via their ISIs account (cf. ). But if you collaborate tightly with a researcher from another institution, the PI can provide him/her an access, by following the next two steps:

  • Ask your administrator to register the external member in the University database.
  • Proceed with the account request procedure as described in the preceding question.

If you belong to one of Geneva based HES-SO institute, your PI should fill this form and request by email an unige external accout to Prof Bastien Chopard from Computer Science Department at UNIGE. Please add M. Nicolas Mayencourt in CC and attach a scaned copy of an official ID of the external collaborator.


Once you have an account on Baobab, you can access the cluster from anywhere through ssh with your ISIs account and password.

You can connect to the cluster using the login node.

  1. (CentOS 7)
  2. N.B. : the former login node has been disabled : baobab1[dot]hpc[dot]unige[dot]ch (CentOS 6)


see Connection refused for connection troubleshooting.

From linux or mac

Connect from the terminal:


or if you need X forwarding:

ssh -Y

From Windows

To access Baobab from Windows, the easyest method is to use a software named PuTTY . You will find the needed informations on the screenshots below.

PuTTY create session

PuTTY create session

PuTTY enter username

PuTTY enter username

PuTTY save session

PuTTY save session

PuTTY open session

PuTTY open session

Graphical access

It’s possible to access Baobab using a graphical interface. We support only X2Go. You need to install X2Go client on your computer and create a session following the screenshots below prior to connect to Baobab.

X2Go client session

X2Go create session

Once connected to the Linux desktop, you can launch lighweight (image viewer etc) applications directly.

If you need to launch a heavy graphical program such as Matlab for example, you need to open a terminal on the Linux desktop (thus from withing the X2Go session) and connect again to Baobab from there like this:

[sagon@login2 ~]$ ssh -Y

Then, create a new interactive session (see Interactive) on a compute node like this:

[sagon@login2 ~]$ salloc -n1 -c 16 --partition=debug-EL7 --time=15:00 srun -n1 -N1 --pty $SHELL

See the login prompt changed to reflect that you are using a node:

[sagon@nodexxx ~]$

You can then launch your graphical software, for example stata:


If you have a Keyboard issue using a mac, please see keymap-issues-with-nx-from-mac-os-x for a possible solution.

File transfer

If you need to transfer files from your pc to Baobab, you need to use the sftp protocol (scp).

From Windows

We suggest you to use FileZilla client to transfer your files.

Filezilla create session

Filezilla create session

Web interface

There is a web interface where you can see the state of the cluster and the state of pending jobs, running jobs etc.

It’s available here:

Access the nodes

Once you are logged in on the login node, you can’t access directly the computation nodes. You can only access the nodes where you have a RUNNING job on it. As soon as your job is finished, you will be logged out from the computation node.