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Re: st: RE: RE: RE: RE: network Stata


From   William Buchanan <william@williambuchanan.net>
To   "statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu" <statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu>
Subject   Re: st: RE: RE: RE: RE: network Stata
Date   Fri, 1 Mar 2013 06:20:02 -0800

Not sure how similar this was, but while I was in grad school at Brown they used a virtual private network for Stata (not sure how many users were authorized for simultaneous use though).  The nice thing about the set up was that Stata was installed locally on your individual machine so there weren't any performance issues related to any network or any issues with downloading/installing/updating user written packages.  The "downside" was that everyone needed to download a program called KeyAccess and a VPN client, which was used to connect to the Brown network remotely.  I know absolutely nothing about how that all worked from the systems side of things, but as an end user I thought it was pretty awesome/convenient; also, if you were on campus and connected to the network there was no need to connect via the VPN which was also pretty convenient.

HTH,
Billy

Sent from my iPhone

On Mar 1, 2013, at 5:49, Nick Cox <njcoxstata@gmail.com> wrote:

> I've been involved with network installations of Stata over several years.
> 
> I agree with much that Tim says, but performance issues have never
> been paramount.
> 
> 1. Although it may seem obvious advice I would try to be involved in
> the installation. As someone comfortable with installing Stata on
> single-user machines I always felt it natural to volunteer to be
> present to answer any questions about Stata while the systems people
> did what they knew about. I was shocked to hear this was unusual;
> apparently in many cases people just send a message that they want X
> (X not Stata) installed or drop off the media and assume that all will
> be clear and simple. Although your situation may differ it does often
> happen that systems people are treated badly and so they may respond
> to requests for extras as nuisance calls. My systems people told me
> that Stata's installation was very smooth and simple compared with
> many that they deal with. They were left with a very positive
> impression of Stata as pleasant to deal with, which helps with
> anything else.
> 
> 2. Generally, it can be important that the systems people -update-
> Stata between versions when there is a fix or addition important to
> you. But unless you have a very helpful person, you should probably
> not expect that each change is -update-d.
> 
> 3. Generally, if your users ever use user-written programs, they will
> find it very frustrating if they can't download them themselves.
> 
> 4. Specifically, you will need to set up -profile.do- that handles
> these details.
> 
> The canonical profile.do used at my institution has this form
> 
> set httpproxyhost <URL appropriate for site>
> set httpproxyport 8080      // yours may be the same
> set httpproxy on
> adopath + <drive where local Stata expert can install programs for all users>
> adopath + <drive where each user can install programs for personal use>
> set scheme s1color  // you get to play style policeman if you wish
> 
> It may be simpler in your case as each person may just has their own
> machine. We need a more subtle set-up where students may be using
> quite different machines but do have a portion of the network they can
> use for storage (as well of course as their own devices).
> 
> On Fri, Mar 1, 2013 at 11:24 AM, Tim Evans <Tim.Evans@wmciu.nhs.uk> wrote:
> 
>> No I don't have issues downloading and searching ado files from the net and I certainly don't have to access permission from my administrator to download Stata packages (which is ironic as pretty much everything else does get blocked!). Whether your network administrator can deny permissions/set permissions I don't know - not my area of expertise. One other thing that did come to mind is the settings for proxy servers - this did cause me initially some problems with updating and downloading ado files but I found a solution at the time (or I located the correct proxy server settings and set them up in Stata and haven't had a problem since, but to be honest, I'm venturing into unfamiliar territory so I don't wish to complicate things further.
> 
> <snip>
> 
>> My organisation went down the network licence option. Generally it works fine - we have 7 licences for about 14 researchers, although only 4 people consistently use Stata daily. We've not had any problem from that point of view but you should consider whether a 1:4 ratio is sufficient
>> - but only you will have a better idea of this. In terms of performance, my main issue I experience with a network installation is actually opening up Stata and also loading/writing data files to the network. My computer will often 'hang' for a minute or so when I open Stata for the first time while I also have issues loading files which are anything above a couple of mb in size. That said I think this is more to do with the network my organisation using being not very good rather than Stata.
>> If I load files/save files to the actual computer I'm working on, it usually runs a breeze - something I have to do sometimes if I am reading/writing a lot of large datasets.
>> 
>> My only other 'bad' experience was when I tried to update one of the packages on the network when other users were using Stata. I think I had to wait until everyone had closed Stata before I could successfully apply my own updates. There might be ways around this - saving packages to a personal space, but this might cause problems if you wanted people to all be consistently using the same versions of things.
>> 
>> Anyhow, that's my experience overall computation of analysis is usually fine once open but anything related to reading and writing to the network can be a bit of a problem but if you have a decent network connection you're probably fine. For reference our networked Stata version is Stata 11.2 for Windows (32-bit).
> 
> Rubil Ivica
> 
>> my institution is considering, for cost-cutting reasons, to buy 10 network Statas, for about 40 researchers, instead of single-user versions. I have had no experience so far with network versions of Stata. Is there anyone to tell me if there are many performance losses in terms of computing power, any inconveniences or something like that, with network versions? I just kind of don't like this network idea. Do I have to worry?
> 
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