User Support News 05 March 2007

The items from which I expect feed-back are marked in red and the items which I propose as action items in the JOC meeting are marked in bold red .


CMS week tutorial

The CMSSW tutorial on parallel with other sessions during the CMS week caused some negative feedback. Offline, computing and physics managements to agree a time slot during CMS and Physics/Trigger weeks which does not overlap with the physics groups sessions

Scheduled tutorials

A list of scheduled tutorials can be seen in the tutorial page, basically each CMS or Physics/Trigger week. A visualization tutorial by Yana Osborne is scheduled for April. Other suggestions?


  • WorkBook: to get started and up to first analysis
  • Reference Manual: brief description of content and purpose of each package
  • CMS Offline Guide:
    • description of algorithms
    • usage and "how-to" documents which are too detailed for the WorkBook
    • gathers information currently spread in numerous wiki pages to a single structure.


Moving to CMSSW_1_2_0 in the WorkBook, see This means that all the tutorials in the WorkBook should use 1_2_0 or a more recent version.

CMS Offline Guide

Work in progress:

I'm waiting feedback from

Reference Manual

The release for which all the subsystem and packages are required to have a documentation page in the reference manual is 1_4_0. The announcement sent to the software development HN forum: and a reminder about the cvs links in The offline conveners should remind the developers of this milestone in their meetings

The release notes summary should be added to the Reference Manual. I've contacted reco, sim and phys tools conveners to get started with these three main areas. More items can be added.

Getting help

Problem reporting channel for data/computing issues

I have proposed to have a "computing front end" person (or a rotating task) to monitor and follow the different channels used in reporting computing problems (HN, ggus, savannah). I have discussed this with Christoph and Peter Kreuzer and they will figure out a list or persons who can participate to this effort. There's a clear consensus that the user questions should be directed to savannah rather that the HN discussion lists to free the discussion lists for the technical discussions and to assure that the questions get answered. This will be announced to the wide public when the persons participating and modus operandi have been defined.

Problem reporting channel for software issues

Most of the user support comes is de facto provided in the HN discussion lists. We also provide the savannah interface (same link as for the computing questions above, interface offers different categories corresponding software and computing issues) to give a single entry point for the user questions. To have the savannah problem reporting work efficiently, we need to
  • define the who is responsible assigning a task to a developer
  • make it clear for users that finally the question very likely goes to the same developers as the ones on HN lists, i.e. it is useless first to discuss an issue on HN lists and then address the same question to savannah (unless no reply was obtained from HN)
  • have a trouble shooter who would first make sure that the reported problem is reproducible before assigning it to anyone making sure that all the necessary information is available (version, config files, private libraries).
This can be discusses in a JOC meeting when I've discussed with the catA person who can potentially participate to this.

EGEE User Support Workshop

I've assisted to the EGEE User Support Workshop. EGEE provides ggus - global grid user support - and the goal of the meeting was to understand how and in which cases we could profit from this service. My slides are attached to this page. Our interest would be to use this service when it offers the most direct way to the problem solution. In most cases ggus users would not be cms end-users but rather cms computing experts. I have discussed and I will discuss this further with Peter Kreuzer for the data production team and with the people providing feedback to CRAB. It was suggested in this workshop that - for example - the data production would form a "user support unit" (in ggus terminology) - not to provide user support but to get it from ggus. If a question would come from this "unit" it would be clear for ggus support personnel that this comes from a big client and requires immediate feedback.

Account registration

Martti Pimiš takes care of the afs accounts and afs disk space for cms users. Werner Jank, Nick Sinanis and Gilles Raymond have done this in his absence. Werner is now retiring and we need to have someone (CERN staff as this is about CERN computing resources) to take care of this when Martti is absent.

-- CMSUserSupport - 05 Mar 2007

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