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The HBS Grid makes massive computing power accessible to the whole HBS research community. Our environments offer a familiar desktop interface and configured software applications including Julia, Jupyterlab, Matlab, Python, R / Rstudio, Stata, VSCode, and hundreds of other popular programs

The HBS Grid consists of many computers connected by a fast network and shared network storage. These powerful machines have up to 1.4Tb of memory and up to 32 cores each, and together they provide the backbone of HBS's research computing capabilities. User-friendly tools and environments are built on top of this physical and network infrastructure, making the power of our computing cluster accessible to all HBS researchers. Using the HBS Grid you can:

  • Interactively analyze data too large for local memory.
  • Speed up your analysis using hundreds of CPUs across multiple machines.
  • Access your persistent remote desktop from anywhere with an internet connection.
  • Store, backup, and access large research data.
  • Share data and collaborate with HBS affiliates and guests.

Quick start

HBS faculty, staff, doctoral students and their guests are eligible for HBSGrid accounts. You can setup your account and connect following the instructions below.

Command line access

If you prefer shell access from a terminal/command prompt you can log in using ssh like this:

ssh USERNAME@hbsgrid.hbs.edu

The software environment is not activated by default when connecting via ssh. Run

ml rcs
to enable the software environment.

Connect to the HBS Grid

  1. If you do not yet have an HBS Grid account request one here.
  2. Connect to the HBS network, either directly if you are on-campus or connect via VPN otherwise.
  3. If the NoMachine application is not yet installed download and install it.
  4. Start the NoMachine application.

  5. If this is your first time connecting click the add button and enter these connection details:

    • Name: "HBS Grid", or anything you like
    • Host: hbsgrid-nx.hbs.edu
    • Leave defaults for all other settings.
  6. Click the connect button and enter your Username and Password (see step 1 above).

The video below demonstrates these steps visually.

NoMachine maintains a detailed connection guide that you can refer to if needed. Connection difficulties from off-campus may be caused by VPN issues, see the VPN guide for details.

Next steps

A selection of our most popular applications are available in the favorites list pinned to the task-bar. Additional application launchers can be found in the Applications menu or by searching in Activities. You can add applications to your favorites list by right-clicking and selecting Add to Favorites.

This environment was designed to be intuitive and user-friendly, and you are encouraged to start exploring the available software and tools. If you are doing real work you will probably want to refer to Mount Drives and Copy Data to learn how to get your data onto the HBS Grid. Additional documentation is available if you need it, including the Launch Applications from the Desktop and Start Jobs from the Terminal sections.

Feedback and support

Our research computing environments are actively developed and continuously improving. Bug reports and feature requests are important contributions to this project and are always welcome and encouraged! If you find that something doesn't work as expected, of if you have a feature request, we want to know about it so we can fix or improve it.

There are three ways to connect:

  • For administrative requests including project and account creation or modification please use our request forms.

  • If you have a question or can't get something working you can post to our discussion forum or reach out to us directly via email at research@hbs.edu.

  • If something looks broken or is not working as expected please open an issue report.