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MSL has a powerful image analysis workstation with Imaris, Imaris Stitcher, Autoquant, MATLAB and FIJI (specs). To ensure this resource is used as efficiently as possible, please keep in mind the following guidelines:

Gaining Access to the System

  • You can use the workstation after receiving a basic orientation from MSL staff, which covers the topics in these guidelines. You do not need to be trained on a particular software package by an MSL staff member before being cleared to use the workstation. A discussion with MSL staff about your image analysis goals is highly recommended before using the workstation for the first time, but this step is not mandatory.

Reserving Time and Signing in

  • You should make a reservation on iLabs whenever you want to use Minerva.
  • Log into the iLab kiosk to start your session before you begin, and to finalize it when you are done. If you forget to do this, the calendar system will assume you are not using the system and someone else may book it and log in.
  • The computer is used with a local login with the user Minerva (MSL staff will provide the password). You will need to log into the computer when you start, and log off when you are done. This is in addition to the iLab login, which is ONYEN based. Note that the local login means that everyone shares the same desktop and can see everyone else’s files.

Remote Access

  • Remote access is possible for users that have a UNC ONYEN login.

Basic Citizenship

  • Punctuality is essential to avoid problems. Be mindful of starting on time and ending on time, budgeting for data transfer. The computer is used by a mix of people who work in person and remotely, so there is no easy way for folks to communicate that they need more time.
  • Please only book the time you need and cancel your session if you cannot make it. The workstation is a limited and critical resource that is shared by many labs.  No-shows and last-minute cancellations are very disruptive to other users and should be avoided.
  • In periods of heavy usage, the MSL Director may ask users to adjust their bookings to ensure fair access of all labs to this resource.

Data Management

  • The two best ways of working on datasets are with hotswap drives (additional details) or by copying data onto the D drive of the computer. The D is the fastest hard drive on the system, by far, which speeds up any operations that involve data read and write operation. Working on data directly on the network or a USB3 hard-drive is not recommended as the read/write speeds are very slow and can lead to software crashes. It is faster and more reliable to copy over everything to the D drive, work there, and copy back the results.
  • If using the D drive, please place your data in D\User data\[your name].
  • Any datasets placed on the desktop will be deleted without notice.
  • If you connect to the network do not check the “reconnect at logon” option. If you do, the system will log into your network account every time anyone else logs into the system.
  • The workstation has around 30TB of temporary storage. Data older than 2 weeks may be deleted during our Monday maintenance session. If you have big datasets and don’t want us to delete them, place them in a folder clearly labeled “do not delete” and communicate this directly to the MSL Director.