McIDAS User's Guide
Version 2011.1

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Preparing a User Account on Windows XP

The McIDAS-X software is installed in the mcidas account. However, you can not run McIDAS-X as user mcidas. Individual user accounts must be created and configured for running McIDAS-X. The four tasks below must be completed for each user account.

The system administrator must complete the first task. The system administrator or user can complete the second, third and fourth tasks.

Making and Configuring the User Account

1. Log on to the workstation as Administrator.

2. Create the user account if it doesn't already exist.

3. Set the Local Path for the user to their home directory, e.g., c:\home\johndoe. To do so, right-click on My Computer then click Manage to bring up the Computer Management window. Then double-click the following in order: Local Users and Groups, Users, user, where user is the user's account name, to bring up their user Properties window. Click its Profile tab, select the radio button next to Local path and enter the user's home directory, e.g., c:\home\johndoe, in its text field and click OK.

If this workstation is a member of a domain controlled by an Active Directory server, the network administrator will need to configure the home directory for the user account on the server to match the one used here.

4. Create a link to /dev/fs/C/home, set ownership of the user's home directory and give everyone Read access. To do so, start an SFU Korn Shell and run the four commands below in order, replacing user with the user's account name.

Type:  ln -s /dev/fs/C/home /dev/fs/C/SFU

Type: cd /home

Type: chown user user

Type: chmod 755 user

Setting the SFU Environment

1. Log on to the user account and start an SFU Korn Shell.

2. Verify that the files mcidas.profile and mcidas.mcenv are present in the ~mcidas directory, as specified in Obtaining McIDAS-X for XP.

Type:  ls -l ~mcidas/mcidas.profile ~mcidas/mcidas.mcenv

The mcidas.profile file may be used in step 6 below as a template for creating a .profile in user accounts that don't have a pre-existing .profile. The mcidas.profile file is a modified version of the profile.usr file supplied by SFU in the /dev/fs/C/SFU/etc directory. The PATH was modified to include the required McIDAS directories and a line was added to source the .mcenv file.

The mcidas.mcenv file contains the environment variables used by McIDAS-X for XP. It is copied to .mcenv in step 7 below and is sourced (run) by .profile each time the user logs on. Its contents may be modified by the user to their individual preferences in step 8 below.

3. Change to the SFU home directory of the user account.

Type:  cd $HOME

4. Copy the mcidas.profile and mcidas.mcenv files to the current directory.

Type:  cp ~mcidas/mcidas.profile .

Type:  cp ~mcidas/mcidas.mcenv .

5. Modify or create the .profile file as follows. If the file does not exist, go to step 6 to create it. If it already exists, add the following two lines (substitute the equivalent if using C shell) to the PATH environment variable section.

export PATH

Also, add the following line anywhere in the file; then, go to step 7.

. $HOME/.mcenv

6. Create the .profile file by copying the mcidas.profile file to .profile.

Type:  cp mcidas.profile .profile

7. Copy the mcidas.mcenv file to .mcenv.

Type:  cp mcidas.mcenv .mcenv

8. Carefully read the .profile and .mcenv files and, if necessary, modify their settings and contents to your preferences.

Setting the Windows XP Environment

Complete the tasks below to make the Windows XP environment compatible for running McIDAS-X for XP.

Setting the Number Of Desktop Colors --McIDAS-X for XP uses 256 colors. You can, however, configure your display for more colors so other Windows applications and the McIDAS COMBINE command can use the additional colors. Complete the steps below to set the palette.

1. Right click on the XP desktop. Then select Properties to bring up the Display Properties window.

2. Click the Settings tab, then select the appropriate value in the Color quality pull down list.

3. Click OK to activate the change.

Creating a McIDAS-X Shortcut --It is easiest to start McIDAS-X from a shortcut on the XP desktop. Complete the steps below to create a McIDAS-X shortcut.

1. Right click on the XP desktop. Then select New, and click Shortcut to bring up the Create Shortcut window.

2. In the Type the location of the item: field, insert the following command (paying careful attention to forward and backward slashes), then click Next >.

%WINDIR%\System32\posix.exe /u /c /bin/ksh -l -c mcidas

3. Type a name for the shortcut, e.g., McIDAS, then click Finish.

4. A shortcut will appear on the desktop. This shortcut can then be copied anywhere. For example, if you want McIDAS-X to start automatically at login, copy the shortcut icon to your Startup folder. Note that you must have an X server running before you start McIDAS-X. Continue with the following section to set the X server properties.

Setting the X Server Properties

You must have an X server running in order to display the McIDAS-X for XP windows. We do not recommend a specific X server for use with McIDAS-X for XP. So we cannot identify the exact X server configuration changes you will need to perform to make it compatible with McIDAS-X for XP. However, many X servers require the changes described below.

Emulating a Three-Button Mouse --McIDAS-X for XP is designed for systems with a three-button mouse, as several commands require you to press the middle of the three buttons. If you have a two-button mouse, you must configure your X server to emulate a three-button mouse. Use the mouse section of your X server's configuration program to do so.

Mapping the Keyboard --Modification of the X server's keyboard mapping is sometimes required to enable certain keys used by McIDAS-X (for example, Alt A, Ctrl F11). Use the keyboard section of your X server's configuration program to select the proper keyboard mapping for your X server.

This concludes the instructions for installing McIDAS-X for XP and configuring user accounts. Continue with Configuring McIDAS-X Sessions with .mcidasrc, which provides information about tailoring McIDAS-X sessions to your preferences.

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