Jupyterhub @ ICS


  1. If you are off campus you will need to first connect to the Campus VPN
    1. Course specific sites are available, for a specific URL please talk to your instructor.
  2. Log in with your ICS credentials.


ICS Instructors, researchers and students are invited to connect to Jupyterlab@ICS https://hub.ics.uci.edu.

Jupyterlab@ICS turns any web browser into a personal Linux server offering a Linux terminal, Jupyter Notebook, an X11 desktop and other web-based apps such as Rstudio, VSCode. ICS home directories are mounted to provide persistent storage.

Fall Quarter Improvements

  • A larger, faster flash storage backend.
  • Self managed package installation (`sudo apt`)
  • Longer run times (idle nodes are removed after 7 days)
  • More hardware behind the cluster
  • Specialized research group and course offerings.
  • Larger pods with up to 8 cores and 16GB RAM.
  • Latest version of VSCode and Rstudio web apps.
  • Jupyterhub has been updated to 1.4.2 and kubernetes 1.19

Jupyterlab@ICS is built on donated equipment in the openlab cluster for research and instructional computing.

Key features and benefits:

  • Nothing to configure, no VM to run, no modules to load.
  • Prior sessions can be reopened from the Running Terminals and Kernels pane.
  • Persistent storage in your ICS home directory.
  • Students and instructors work in the same cloud IDE.
  • Works for any OS and any browser.
  • Customizable per course of per research group.
  • Users are isolated from one another.
  • Mid-quarter update.

Complete Specs

When you login to ICS Jupyterhub using any web browser, you get a personal docker container

  • Ubuntu 20.04
  • 18 nodes
  • 360 CPU Cores
  • 1.33 TiB Memory Total
  • Up to up to 8 vcpu cores and 16 GB RAM More
  • Backed by super quick all flash storage Faster
  • Your own ICS Account home directory
  • `sudo apt` allows self-service software installation.
  • IDE's
    • VSCode
    • Rstudio
    • Octave
  • Servers
    • Shiny Server
  • Notebooks
    • Python
    • JavaScript
    • Julia
    • R
    • Octave
  • CLI Tools
    • gcc/g++ and debugger
    • python3
    • R
    • Java
  • GIT Integration tools
  • X11 DEsktop



ICS is running a Jupyter lab.

Getting Started

  1. If you are off campus you will need to first connect to the Campus VPN
    1. Course specific sites are available, for a specific URL please talk to your instructor.
  2. Login with your ICS credentials.
Notebooks: R,Python3, NodeJS, Julia
X11 Desktop

Restarting your Server

In order to restart your Jupyterhub pod, navigate to the Hub Control Panel from the menu: “File > Hub Control Panel”

This will open a new tab similar to this:

If a Jupyterhub pod is currently running, there will large red button that says “Stop My Server”. Clicking on that button will stop the running Jupyterhub pod.

After a moment, the “Stop My Server” and “My Server” buttons will be replaced by a “Launch Server” Button, click on it and follow on screen prompts.

Creating multiple servers

Users can start multiple Jupyter servers on a single JupyterHub instance.

In order to start a second server, navigate to the Hub Control Panel in “File > Hub Control Panel”

This will open a new tab.

Enter a name for your new server, then click on the link to the right: “Add New Server”.

Instructional Ecosystem

General Availability

The https://hub.ics.uci.edu site includes a wide number of extensions. These extensions will come and go during the quarter based on availability, usefullness, load, and security. Please send any requests for new extensions to helpdesk@ics.uci.edu.

Specific Course Hubs

Instructors may request a course specific hub. Available plugins will not change during the quarter except in response to extreme security vulnerabilities. Course hubs can be restricted to enrolled students and students on a list curated by the instructor. Upon request, instructors may be given rights to view student projects.


9/30/2020 containers.ics.uci.edu/jupyter/notebook:2020093004

Installing and Running PostgreSQL

Please send email to helpdesk@ics.uci.edu if you have any problems running the following commands.

Start up a terminal from the launcher (you can start the launcher with ctrl + shift +l):


To install, run the folowing from the terminal command line.

sudo apt update 
sudo apt install -y postgresql

Running as non-root

The following command create the database in your ICS home directory (which is persistent storage) and runs locally on the machine.

export PATH=$PATH:/usr/lib/postgresql/12/bin/
initdb -D ~/pgsql  -U your_user_name
pg_ctl -D ~/pgsql -l logfile -o "-k /tmp" start

If you restart your hub, you will need to install and run pgsql again, but you will not need to re-initialize the database.

Copying Files


NOTE: This works for small file sizes. Please use Samba to map your network drive to copy large file.

  1. Open the jhub filebrowser by clicking on the indicated file browser icon:
  2. Drag files from your local computer into the file tree on the left hand window pane in your browser. This uploads the file into your ICS account:


  1. Simply right click on the file you would like to download and select “Download” from the popup menu:

FAQ and Troubleshooting

How do I debug C++ code in VSCode

A Install the C/C++ IntelliSense extension for VSCode:


Note that VSCode in hub is not true VSCode, and as such it won't have access to the same list of extensions.  The product used inside of hub is:


Q My pod is stopped after 1 hour of idleness (3600 seconds) A By defualt, jupyterhub culls idle pods after 3600 seconds. That has been extended to 1 week on stage. Culling User Pods

Q I receive the error “Please use a different workspace.”

Please use a different workspace.
This workspace is already in use in another JupyterLab window. 
Please enter another workspace name.

Q “503 : Service Unavailable Your server appears to be down. Try restarting it from the hub.”

You ran out of space or have too many files on your home directory (H:).  Delete files as needed.

A You already have a Jupyterlab browser open. Simply type in a name for the new desktop, anything you like, and click on “Switch Workspace”.

Q Are we using our own docker hub

A We run Harbor locally.

We were very happy with it until version 1.9 implemented an AD specific directory search. We are currently running an ICS fork but, if the folks at goharbor do not fix it, we will need to find another solution.

Q RStudio does not have the same installed packages as R

A Use the following command to add the local conda library to your RStudio session

     .libPaths( c( "/opt/conda/lib/R/library/" , .libPaths() ) )

Q Desktop blank or only shows a black background.

A In the past this has happened when moving from an older version of the hub to a newer one. See fi the following steps resolve the issue:

  1. Click on the stop server button in https://hub.ics.uci.edu/hub/admin#/
  2. ssh into openlab.ics.uci.edu and `rm -rf ~/.jupyterhub ~/.config/xfce4`
  3. Start a new server in https://hub.ics.uci.edu/hub/admin#/ (or log out and back into https://hub.ics.uci.edu


Submitting a Trouble Report

Places to get help

First and foremost, bring the problem to your instructor's or TA's attention. Chances are you are not the only one experiencing this problem and they will be able to help or provide you with the next steps to resolving your problem.

Your instructor may ask to you submit a trouble report to the ICS Computing Support Helpdesk if they don't have the solution or if you need more help than they can provide.

How to submit

In order to submit a helpdesk, please include the following information in an email to helpdesk@ics.uci.edu:

  • ICS Account Name
  • Hub Insance (e.g. ics51, ics53)
  • Location(e.g. Home, Openlab, Middle Earth)
  • Campus VPN
  • Operating System
  • Browser
  • Hub Applications (e.g. desktop, termlina, R)
  • Time and date that the problem occured
  • Symptom/Issue.

Can't Open CSV File


The hub container hangs when trying to open up a CSV file.


Use the Firefox browser. The CSV reader exhausts a memory limit that both Edge and Chrome have set.

Permament solution is pending.

X11 Desktop Blank


The X11 desktop is blank or black.


You will need to restart the hub container using the directions above above.

This happens when the “Send CtlAltDel” button is clicked in the upper right corner of the screen. We are looking for a solution, but for the time being, do not click that button.

Can't Start a Server


See helpdesk ticket 73286

It appears as if the server failed to start:

Running `kubectl -n jhub log jupyter-junjies1`, immediately after opening starting the jhub server, revealed log messages regarding permissions.


In this case, the user home directory was set to 0700. Setting the user home directory to 0711 resolved the problem.

Can't Delete Pod


See https://helpdesk.ics.uci.edu/Ticket/Display.html?id=73077

kubectl  -n jhub-ics53 delete pod jupyter-dingruiz
  Type     Reason         Age                    From                  Message
  ----     ------         ----                   ----                  -------
  Warning  FailedKillPod  2m19s (x55 over 111m)  kubelet, centaurus-5  error killing pod: failed to "KillContainer" for "notebook" with KillContainerError: "rpc error: code = Unknown desc = operation timeout: context deadline exceeded"

Try this:

kubectl  -n jhub-ics53 delete pod jupyter-dingruiz

If that doesn't work:

kubectl  -n jhub-ics53 delete pod jupyter-dingruiz --now

When all else fails:

kubectl  -n jhub-ics53 delete pod jupyter-dingruiz --grace-period=0 --force  

Other Virtual Resources @ ICS

virtual_environments/jupyterhub.txt · Last modified: 2022/04/25 08:28 by luciad
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