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A Million Logins: Some IRAF Usage Stats

  • Tuesday, May 13 2014 @ 10:52 PM GMT
  • Contributed by:
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Sometime earlier today the IRAF v2.16.1 release passed a milestone which may have happened before, but couldn't be directly measured. Namely, the 1,000,000th login to the CL since the 10/12/13 public release of the system.

Update 06/12/14: Thanks to a very busy machine in Nagoya, the 2,000,000th login was reached just 29 days later ...
Update 06/15/14: ... and then the 3,000,000th login was reached just 3 days, and it's still going ......
Update 06/17/14: ... and then the 4,000,000th login was reached just 2 days, and it's still going ......
Update 06/23/14: ... and then the 5,000,000th login was reached just 5 days, and and finally slowing down ......
Update 09/03/14: ... and finally over the 10,000,000th login this past weekend.

In this release there is an IRAF version checker at each CL login that effectively pings our web site, that counter rolled over earlier today and refers *only* to the v2.16.1 system, so actual usage numbers for all IRAF installations in the community are certainly higher. Combined with the FTP logs, we can derive some interest usage stats:

  • More than 1,000,000 logins to the IRAF v2.16.1 CL
  • 5143 unique IP address from 66+ countries (44 US States)
  • 1815+ second-level domains (e.g. noao.edu, implies # of institutions)
  • 3348+ third-level domains (e.g. tuc.noao.edu, implies # of 'departments')
  • 41.2% of institutional domains are in the US (7.9% of those are NOAO)
  • 96.5% of logins were on 64-bit systems, (=> 3.5% were 32-bit)
  • 64.3% of logins were on Linux systems (=> 34.7% were OSX)
  • 83% of sites were on 64-bit systems (=> 17% were 32-bit)
  • 70.4% of sites were on Linux systems (=> 20.9% were OSX)
  • 15093+ downloads of the v2.16.1 distribution
  • 54.6% were 64-bit, 22.4% were 32-bit single-architecture downloads
  • 15% of downloads contained multiple archs (e.g. combined 32/64-bit)

In the past we've estimated IRAF usage as being ~5000 users at ~2000 sites, these numbers indicate that estimate is probably low when you consider the number of users still running pre-v2.16.1 systems.

A million logins does not mean that each of 5000 users logged in once a day in the ~200 days since the release. Rather, most of the logins came from just a few sites which accounts for the high rate of 64-bit Linux systems:

  • 60.1% of logins came from the top 3 domains (92.6% from the top 10 and 95.2% from the top 20 domains
  • 80.6% of unique sites logged in 10 times or less
  • 95.5% of unique sites logged in 50 times or less

Usage patterns in the logs indicate these heavy users are logging in every few seconds for hours at a time, implying they are being used in a pipeline/batch system with many repeated calls of the form

        cl < mytask.cl

(Note pipelines using pyraf would count only as a single instance (if at all), those using #!cl scripts (such as the NOAO NHPPS) would not count at all). The IP addresses point to Grid systems at CADC, Poland and Japan as well as from multiple machines (e.g. in a cluster) at CDS and Obs. Paris amongst others. Even excluding these sites, the logs indicate the number of interactive sessions in the last 7 months still numbers in the hundreds-of-thousands, more if you include systems not upgraded to the latest v2.16.1 release.

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