WQ (WorkQueuing) provides a dispatcher-worker service to allow tasks to be distributed across multiple nodes under PBS control. The tasks may be serial, or small parallel OpenMP and MPI tasks (MPI tasks may only use cores on a single node under WQ). The user customizes a PBS template file to fit their needs, and provides a task script or program to be control. The template, example task script, and user documentation are pointed to by environment variables (WQ_PBS_TEMPLATE, WQ_EXAMPLE_TASK, and WQ_DOC) defined by the module or softenv key for WQ.

Versions and Availability

Softenv Keys for wq on supermike2
Machine Version Softenv Key
supermike2 264 +wq-264
supermike2 272 +wq-272
▶ Softenv FAQ?

The information here is applicable to LSU HPC and LONI systems.


SoftEnv is a utility that is supposed to help users manage complex user environments with potentially conflicting application versions and libraries.

System Default Path

When a user logs in, the system /etc/profile or /etc/csh.cshrc (depending on login shell, and mirrored from csm:/cfmroot/etc/profile) calls /usr/local/packages/softenv-1.6.2/bin/use.softenv.sh to set up the default path via the SoftEnv database.

SoftEnv looks for a user's ~/.soft file and updates the variables and paths accordingly.

Viewing Available Packages

Using the softenv command, a user may view the list of available packages. Currently, it can not be ensured that the packages shown are actually available or working on the particular machine. Every attempt is made to present an identical environment on all of the LONI clusters, but sometimes this is not the case.


$ softenv
These are the macros available:
*   @default
These are the keywords explicitly available:
+amber-8                       Applications: 'Amber', version: 8 Amber is a
+apache-ant-1.6.5              Ant, Java based XML make system version: 1.6.
+charm-5.9                     Applications: 'Charm++', version: 5.9 Charm++
+default                       this is the default environment...nukes /etc/
+essl-4.2                      Libraries: 'ESSL', version: 4.2 ESSL is a sta
+gaussian-03                   Applications: 'Gaussian', version: 03 Gaussia
Listing of Available Packages

See Packages Available via SoftEnv on LSU HPC and LONI.

For a more accurate, up to date list, use the softenv command.


Currently there are some caveats to using this tool.

  1. packages might be out of sync between what is listed and what is actually available
  2. resoft and soft utilities are not; to update the environment for now, log out and login after modifying the ~/.soft file.

softenv is available on all LSU HPC and LONI clusters to all users in both interactive login sessions (i.e., just logging into the machine) and the batch environment created by the PBS job scheduler on Linux clusters and by loadleveler on AIX clusters..

Packages Availability

This information can be viewed using the softenv command:

% softenv
Managing Environment with SoftEnv

The file ~/.soft in the user's home directory is where the different packages are managed. Add the +keyword into your .soft file. For instance, ff one wants to add the Amber Molecular Dynamics package into their environment, the end of the .soft file should look like this:



To update the environment after modifying this file, one simply uses the resoft command:

% resoft


  • Create a file with each line defining a file name, command line, or whatever the task script/program requires.
  • Create a task script, or command, that runs correctly when given a line from the above file. The variable WQ_EXAMPLE_TASK points to a sample script file.
  • Test the task script manually, just to be sure.
  • Make a copy of the file pointed to by WQ_PBS_TEMPLATE, and update the settings to suite your needs (user name, allocation code, other options.)
  • Submit the PBS script as usual.


Last modified: July 08 2016 12:42:29.