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Linux / HPC

There are multiple places where you can store files. There is your home directory, /home/<username>, and "storage", available at /net/storage/<username>, where <username> is your username.

The quota for home is 2GB for students and 20GB for everyone else. Storage has a quota of 100GB for students and 500GB for everyone else.

The quota for the home directories is so small, because it is backed entirely by fast solid state drives whereas storage is backed by convential rotating rust. Just symlink directories in storage to your home if you need to access them more often.

Group members can also put data into grouphome /net/grouphome/<groupname>. This is meant for data that is relevant to the whole group, in contrast to the former places that are meant for personal data.

Usually, the reason is that you are over quota (you are using to much storage). The command  quota -s can tell you if that is the case. The quota for /home is 2GB for students and 20GB for group members.  The solution is to simply delete no longer needed files or move them to  /net/storage/<username>.

Some FU forms (e.g. travel reimbursement and holiday forms) are PDFs using so-called XFA forms that are solely supported by Adobe Reader. Since Version 9 Adobe does not support running Adobe Reader in Linux environments. To allow filling out these forms we support the current Adobe Reader with Wine. You can start Adobe Reader using the acroread binary.

We install a lot of packages by default, probably the package is already installed. If not and the software is packaged for Debian, its sufficient to write an email to linux@physik.fu-berlin.de with the package's name. You're also free to compile things to your hearts content in your home and the package managers of the usual programming languages have options to install packages to your home  (e.g. pip3 install --user).

Yes! Please find the information in our Wiki.

With bookworm Debian started to follow PEP 668 and mark their Python installation as externally managed. This makes pip refuse to install packages so as to not damage this isntallation. This is not a danger for us, since users cannot write to system directories anyway, but this is leads to pip refusing to install to the home directory via python -m pip install --user.

We recommend to use virtual environments to resolve this issue, i.e. for each for your Python projects

python -m venv myenv

source myenv/bin/activate

python -m pip install pkg1 pkg2 ...

or use tools such as uv, pdm or poetry in alternative to pip. To install these and other tools, that should stand on their own and that you just want to use, we recommend pipx, which is installed by default on all Linux machines starting with bookworm.

For those that don't want to use virtual environments there is the pip option --break-system-packages, which you can also add to your pip config at ~/.config/pip/pip.conf:

break-system-packages = true

There is no danger in doing this, since the system Python installation cannot be changed on our systems, but we want to highlight that the upstream Python project recommends the usage of virtual environments.