Isis tutorial installing

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Getting ISIS

Installing ISIS and all the modules it depends on, is not a trivial task.

We therefore provide a complete isis environment that is pre-installed in a so-called singularity environment. Singularity runs very well under Linux and can also be installed under windows, although this is a bit more complex, which is why we also offer an alternative. Note that you will need about 4 GB of disk space for the installation.

If you do not have enough disk space available or if you are not happy/comfortable with installing software on your computer, we also have an option to run the tutorials on machines at the observatory.

Setup for Linux
  • Install singularity. How you do this depends on the flavor of Linux that you have installed. On ubuntu systems, this is as easy as executing
sudo apt-get install singularity-container

On other Linux versions different commands are required.

mkdir xray
cd xray
wget https://www.sternwarte.uni-erlangen.de/isis/isis-singularity.img
  • you can then launch the singularity environment as follows:
cd xray
singularity run isis-singularity.img

This brings you into an environment that contains most of the relevant X-ray astronomical software, such as, e.g., fv (which you might want to use to display X-ray astronomical data files). You then launch isis by typing isis:

 isis
Setup for Windows

For older windows machines:

  • Install singularity using the instructions on the singularity homepage. This is a somewhat involved process, but doable in principle if you are ok with computers. If the instructions don't
  • Follow the instructions above.


For Windows 10: follow the instructions at this link. This is fairly advanced, however.

Setup for Mac

Apple systems claim they are Unix, but they really are not fully compatible to Unix standards. What is worse, there are two different eco systems available for MacOS if you want to compile your own software. And often, only one of them works. If you feel adventurous, you can install the prerequisites on the isis MacOS installation instructions, then install HEASoft (you need to use the source installation), and then go back and install isis.

If you are not experienced in compiling and installing your own software on MacOS, this is not recommended, however, and it is better to ask for an account at the observatory (see below).

Working on Remeis observatory computers
  • If you do not have enough disk space on your computer or do not want to install things locally, contact Ingo Kreykenbohm at the email address given out in the lecture and ask him to create an account on the Remeis computers for you.
  • To work on the computers from home, once you have the Remeis account, install the X2go remote desktop environment, following the instructions here.