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What is required to obtain a SHARCNET account

Anyone who would like to use SHARCNET may apply for an account. Please bear in mind the following:

  • There are no shared/group accounts, each person who uses SHARCNET requires their own account and must not share their password
  • Applicants who are not faculty (eg. students, postdocs) require an account sponsor who must already have a SHARCNET account. This is typically one's supervisor.
  • There is no fee for academic access, but account sponsors are responsible for reporting their research activities to Compute Canada, and all academic SHARCNET users must obtain a Compute Canada account before they may apply for a SHARCNET account.
  • All SHARCNET users must read and follow the policies listed here

How do I apply for an account?

Applying for an account is either done through the Compute Canada Database (for academic users) or by contacting SHARCNET (for non-academic use). Each case is outlined below.

Note: If you have an existing SHARCNET account, do not apply for a new account. Each person should only ever have one account, which can be transferred to new groups, etc. See this knowledge base entry for further details.

Academic Users

Faculty, students, and staff at academic institutions, as well as their research collaborators, can apply for their SHARCNET account as follows:

  1. Acquire a Compute Canada Identifier (CCI) by applying for a Compute Canada account here.
    • NOTE: If you are not faculty (e.g. students, collaborators, research assistants) your sponsor will have to have an account already, and you will need to know their CCRI identifier to complete the application form. Ask them for it as it is considered private information.
    • If you are not at a Canadian institution you can still get a CCI (and hence a SHARCNET account) as long as your sponsor has a CCI.
      • In this case specify Institution: Other... in the Compute Canada account application form.
  2. You will be sent a message to confirm your email address.
    • Check your spam folder if you don't see it.
    • Click on the link in the message to confirm.
  3. Once you confirm your email address, an authorizing authority will be sent an email requesting that they confirm your application.
    • If you are applying for a Faculty position account from a SHARCNET member institution then your SHARCNET Site Leader will authorize your account.
    • If your sponsor is from a SHARCNET member institution they will authorize your account.
      • Sponsors may need to check their spam folder to find the confirmation request.
    • If your account sponsor is not located at a SHARCNET member institution your local consortium in Compute Canada will approve your application based on their policy.
  4. Once your Compute Canada account is approved, you should either log back in to the Compute Canada Database where you originally applied for an account, and continue these instructions, or, if you previously held a SHARCNET account, please email help@sharcnet.ca so we can reactivate your old account (further information can be found in the instructions below concerning the linking of one's account).
  5. Navigate to the Consortium Accounts Page, it is in the "My Account" menu, listed as Apply for consortium account.
  6. Click the Apply button next to the word SHARCNET.
  7. Follow the instructions on the SHARCNET website to complete the application.
    • If you are not faculty, your sponsor needs a SHARCNET account (in addition to their Compute Canada account) before you can complete the SHARCNET application.
  8. A SHARCNET staff person will review your application before you receive cluster access.

You will be sent an email containing either your new account credentials and information on getting started with SHARCNET or the outcome of your application once it has been processed. Please note that it may take up to 1 business day to process your application once it has been successfully submitted (including all authorizations).

If you are having trouble with the above instructions please contact help@sharcnet.ca for assistance.

Non-academic Users

All other account requests (commercial access, non-academic, ineligible for a CCI, etc.) should be sent to help@sharcnet.ca. These are dealt with on per-case basis and approved following consultation with SHARCNET Administration. If you are working outside of academia we recommend you read our Commercial Access Policy which can be found in the SHARCNET web portal here.

I am changing supervisor or I am becoming faculty, and I already have a SHARCNET account. Should I apply for a new account?

No, you should apply for a new role (CCRI) at Compute Canada and indicate that you want your new role to be your primary role.

The process is as follows:

  1. apply for a new role at the Compute Canada Database under your new supervisor/position
    • Disable old roles as appropriate - by doing so you will not be asked to renew them each year at renewal time, so you can avoid future hassles with deactivating upfront. That being said, you may wish to leave some/all activated if your arrangement in prior roles has not changed and you'd like to continue computing in those groups. If in doubt email accounts@computecanada.ca for direction.
    • Ensure that you click the check-box beside the question Make this role primary?
      • If you forgot to check off the Make this role primary option in the application form, email help@sharcnet.ca and we can update it for you.

Once your new role is confirmed by your sponsor and/or the Compute Canada account authority for your institution, your SHARCNET account will automatically change status/sponsor. Note that for SHARCNET institutions only the sponsor needs to confirm sponsored roles at Compute Canada, but for other institutions in Compute Canada the institutional account authority may also have to approve the role.

Please note the following caveats associated with changing account sponsor at SHARCNET:

Note that for sponsored accounts, your new sponsor needs to have an activated SHARCNET account before your account will be reactivated following the change in position. If your sponsor applies for their SHARCNET account after you've obtained your new role, you (or preferably, they) must email help@sharcnet.ca indicating that you'd like your account reactivated as it does not happen automatically.

file permissions

Your files will retain their old group ownership after the switch (although you may change them to your new group if you wish with the chgrp command).

email contact address

By default the email address associated with your account will not change to the one associated with your new role. If you wish to use your new email address you have to update your Contact Information at the Compute Canada Database to make your new address Primary

I have an existing SHARCNET account and need to link it to a new Compute Canada account, how do I do that?

You first need to get a Compute Canada Role Identifier (CCRI) (steps 1-3) and then notify SHARCNET that you would like to link your Compute Canada Account (CCI) to your existing SHARCNET account.

Important Notes: If you are a sponsored user then your sponsor must complete this process before you can proceed to step 4. SHARCNET cannot give out account credentials, including CCRIs, due to data privacy concerns, so you must obtain this information from your sponsor.

  1. submit a Compute Canada Account Application
    • creating this account will also create a CCRI
    • Note: if you have an account sponsor you will need their CCRI to apply
    • Note the default username field; the form will not let you use your old SHARCNET username - you will have to apply using a different name and then request that it be changed back to your old SHARCNET username as part of step #4 (we'll contact Compute Canada to do this). Alternatively, if you'd like to pick something new, you should ask that we update your username at SHARCNET to be your new Compute Canada default username when emailing us as part of step #4 below.
  2. confirm your email by clicking on the link in the email message you receive
    • you may have to check your spam folder for this message as it is automatically generated
  3. wait for your sponsor or siteleader to approve your account
    • your sponsor may need to check his or her spam folder to find the confirmation email.
    • depending on your local consortium, your consortium may need to approve your account after your sponsor approves it.
    • when approved, you'll receive email indicating your account is active
    • it will also contain your new CCRI
  4. email help@sharcnet.ca to request that your Compute Canada and SHARCNET accounts be linked

After linking your accounts there may be a modest delay before your status is updated in the SHARCNET account system. If you are logged into any clusters you should logout and back in again to update your ldap group membership, otherwise when you submit jobs they may fail with warning messages containing bsub status=65280. After linking accounts, SHARCNET will utilize your primary email address on file with Compute Canada for all communications. If your sponsor or position has changed since you had last accessed your SHARCNET account then you should review the notes in the above section concerning change of sponsor/supervisor.

If you encounter problems please email help@sharcnet.ca.