This page details the operations and specifications of the HTRC Data Capsules. See the HTRC Data Capsule Tutorial for more a detailed, step-by-step tutorial for how to use you capsule.
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HTRC Data Capsules are secure computing environments developed to facilitate non-consumptive text analysis research. Each
Capsule is a virtual machine (VM) that provides researchers a desktop they can use to perform their investigation of volumes in the HathiTrust Digital Library.
Capsule Technical Specifications
Configuration options for Research Capsules:
- Data Capsule Image: there are two images (versions) of the standard Capsule desktop, one that comes pre-loaded with sample volumes from the HathiTrust and one that does not
- Virtual Machine CPUs (VCPUs): the number of virtual machine processors from 2-4 VCPUs for the Capsule
- Memory: between 4GB and 16GB
Maintenance vs. Secure Mode
The Capsules are configured with special security settings that allow you to interact with them in two modes: maintenance mode and secure mode
- In maintenance mode, you are allowed to access the network freely and install whatever software you want.
- In secure mode, general network access is restricted, but you can access the HTRC corpus repository, which is otherwise blocked. Any changes you make to the
- Capsule in secure mode will not persist. To save data from your analysis, you'll need to save your results in
- the secure volume storage on your
- Capsule. This storage option is not visible in maintenance mode.
Use the HTRC Portal interface to set-up and interact with your capsule VM, including:
Create - a capsule is created, but it is not yet running
Start - turn the capsule on in maintenance mode
Stop - shutdown a capsule
Delete - the capsule is deleted (including its data and settings)
Switch modes - change the capsule from maintenance to secure mode, or vice-versa
See status - view your capsules and their statuses
Once a capsule is started via the HTRC Portal interface, you can access your capsule desktop using a VNC client. To run analysis using data from the HTRC corpus repository, you'll need to switch the capsule VM to secure mode. Here is a typical workflow a new user may follow:
Create and start a capsule in the HTRC Portal
Log into the capsule using a VNC client
Configure the software environment of the capsule as needed. Download the scripts or programs you plan to use in your analysis
Switch capsule to secure mode through HTRC Portal
Run your against the secure HTRC corpus repository
Move your results to the secure volume storage on the capsule
Switch capsule back to maintenance mode to regain normal network access
HTRC Data Capsule Configurations
There is an overall disk quota, a memory quota, and a CPU quota for each user in the Data Capsule environment. One user can consume up to 100 GB of disk space, ~20 GB of memory, and 10 CPUs. If you attempt to create a second or third Capsule that exceeds your quota in one of the areas above, then you will encounter an error.
Capsule Recall Practices
recall policy recall policy
The HTRC Data Capsule service’s maximum capacity flexes depending on the size of the Capsules it hosts. In the event that the Data Capsule service cannot satisfy all simultaneous demands for Capsules:
A Capsule may be recalled (i.e. deleted) and the work environment will no longer exist.
Capsules will be identified for recall based on criteria such as date of last use and an individual’s resource usage, with the goal being to extend the number of individuals afforded the opportunity to conduct research using a Capsule
A researcher whose Capsule is identified for recall will be notified via email regarding the pending recall, and they will have 5 days to respond to the recall notification.
Priority in satisfying a new request for a Capsule will be given to researchers whose affiliated organization is a HathiTrust member.
At times when the Data Capsule service has reached capacity, incoming requests for Capsules will be screened based on institutional affiliation.
Instructors who intend to use the HTRC Data Capsules in a course should contact firstname.lastname@example.org so that proper arrangements can be made.
Research Data Capsules can be shared between up to 5 collaborators. The person who creates the Capsule has the most control over it, and they can add and remove other collaborators, assign permissions, and delete the Capsule.
There are 3 roles for users of a shared Capsule:
- Owner (and Owner-Controller): By default each Capsule creator will get this role. It comes with the highest level of control. The Owner-Controller is able to perform all Capsule functions available in HTRC Analytics, including accessing, starting, stopping, switching modes, deleting, and managing the collaborators on the Capsule. By default the person who creates the Capsule will be the Owner-Controller until they delegate control of the Capsule to a collaborator, at which point their role becomes Owner and the ability to start, stop, and switch the modes of the Capsule moves to the Controller (see below). The Owner can resume Owner-Controller status whenever they choose.
- Contributor: The Owner can share their Capsule with other HTRC Analytics users. New collaborators have the role of Contributor when they are added. This role has the lowest permission level. Contributors can connect to and conduct research in the Capsule, but cannot perform any of the Capsule management functions.
- Controller: The Owner can choose to give a Contributor the status of Controller in order to delegate some management tasks of the Capsule to that user, including starting, stopping, and switching modes. There can only be one Controller at a time, and the Owner can revoke control of the Capsule at any time.
For Capsules with full-corpus access, HTRC will review the request to add a collaborator and either approve or deny it. The Capsule details will only appear on their Capsules listing page if the request is approved.
As they are meant for short-term exploration, demo capsules cannot be shared with collaborators.
Pre-installed Software, Libraries, and Data
Each Capsule comes pre-loaded with the following software, libraries, and data. For more information, consult the ReadMe file on the desktop of your
Capsule for more details about installed packages.
|Anaconda 3||4.2.0||Supports both Python 2.X and 3.X. See list below for the Python libraries pre-installed (some via Anaconda)|
|InPho Topic Explorer||Project website: https://www.hypershelf.org/|
- GNU Parallel
- Java 8
- Scala 2.11.6
Button Hyperlink title Learn more type standard url https://github.com/htrc/htrc-feature-reader
- htrc workset toolkit
Button Hyperlink title Learn more type standard url HTRC Workset Toolkit
- GenSim (currently running with warning)
- 3 sample HTRC worksets of 1000 volumes each: U.S. Government Documents, German language volumes, 19th Century English Literature.
HTRC Data Capsule operations
Please note: You are required to log in to the HTRC Portal before you can perform these operations.
Create a capsule virtual machine (VM)
- Navigate to the “Create Virtual Machine” tab and fill in the form.
- Choose an image from the drop down list
- Provide username and password for the VNC session
- Choose how many CPU and memory you want your virtual machine to have
- Click the "Create VM" button. The VM creation procedure usually takes about 1 minute to finish. You can refresh your screen to see if it has completed.
Show capsule VM status
- Navigate to the “Virtual Machines” page
- You can see all the capsule VMs associated with your account and the actions you can perform on them
- Click on the VM id link to see more details about the capsule VM.
- The “VM Initial Logging User ID” and “VM Initial Logging Password” are the username and password you use to log into the capsule VM
- NOTE: These are different from the ones you use to open your VNC session to the VM
- The “Public IP” and “VNC port” are information you need to open a VNC session
- You can also use “Public IP” and “SSH port” to log into VM through ssh but this is only allowed in maintenance mode.
Start a capsule VM
- Start a capsule VM on the “Virtual Machine” page. This operation usually takes 2-3 minutes, and you can refresh your screen to see if it has finished.
- Once the capsule VM starts successfully, you can see more available operations, including switch, stop, and delete.
Log into a capsule VM
- Use your preferred VNC client, e.g. Google VNC Client, to connect to the capsule VM by providing the VNC password and VM login username, as well as login password.
Switch modes of a capsule VM
Stop a Virtual Machine
- Stop a capsule VM by clicking the “Stop VM” button. After that, the capsule VM shutdowns and everything inside the VM is maintained.
Restart a Virtual Machine
- Although we do not provide a reset button for you to restart the VM directly, you can always stop the VM and then start it again. This has the same effect of pushing a reset button on a machine.
Delete a Virtual Machine
- You can delete a capsule VM by clicking the “Delete VM” button. After that, the capsule cleared, including its settings and any data on it.
Using an HTRC Data Capsule
Interacting with a Capsule
Access your Capsule in-browser from HTRC Analytics either by viewing the Remote Desktop (both modes available) or the Terminal command line interface (Maintenance Mode only). Earlier versions of the Capsule environment required a VNC viewer and passwords for both the VNC and the Capsule's operating system; those requirements are removed in the web-based version that was implemented in August, 2018.
You can also SSH into your Capsule in Maintenance Mode only if you've followed the directions under "Advanced Features" to set-up a public key.
For a detailed explanation for how to create, access, and operate your Capsule, please reference the above link "Follow a Tutorial" and select "HTRC Data Capsule Tutorial" for step-by-step instructions.
Importing data to a Capsule
Use the HTRC Workset Toolkit to import HathiTrust text data into your Capsule. Any outside data you plan to analyze in conjunction with HathiTrust data can be added to your Capsule from a web-accessible location when your machine is in Maintenance Mode.
Generic Research Workflow
Create and start a Capsule in the HTRC
View your Capsule using the Remote Desktop view or Terminal view.
Configure the software environment of the Capsule as needed. Download the scripts or programs you plan to use in your analysis
Switch Capsule to secure mode through HTRC
Run your against the secure HTRC corpus repository
Move your results to the secure volume storage on the Capsule
Switch Capsule back to maintenance mode to regain normal network access
Data and tools can easily enter a user's Capsule, but anything leaving a Capsule must undergo review prior to release to the user. The guidelines used during review of the outputs of a Capsule are as follows:
- Files containing any OCR text or images of pages or volumes will be prohibited from leaving a Capsule.
- Binary files are prohibited from leaving a Capsule
- Encrypted files are prohibited from leaving a Capsule
- PDF files or other format of file that contains images of OCR text or text images are prohibited from leaving a Capsule
- For any Capsule results directory that exceeds 1 MB in total, the collection will not be released pending discussion with the Capsule owner
The general rule-of-thumb is whether the export would create a substitute for human-reading the original text. (The full Non-Consumptive Use Research Policy is also available for your reference.) If you would like someone to pre-review a sample file that would represent the kinds of data you would like to export from a capsule before you begin your work, please contact email@example.com.
A release request must be under 67 MB, and any submitted requests over this size will fail due to technical limitations.
Release requests should include a README text file describing the files included in the request and their data structure.
If you have a directory of results files that you would like to export to be released, you can zip the directory and export the compressed file.
You will receive an email notifying you if your results export has been approved. The link for downloading results that have been approved for export will appear on the landing page for your capsule. Each approved request will be available for 2 weeks from the approval date. All collaborators on a capsule will get notification that approved results are ready, and will find the released results available to them on their capsule landing page.