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Scisoft 7.5 in Fedora 14 using bash

Scisoft 7.5 in Fedora 14 using bash

Scisoft is a great collection of astronomical software (IRAF 2.14-1, IDL 7.1, Python 2.5.4, PyRAF 1.9.0, and more) mainly used at the ESO. Installing the whole package is very easy through yum in Fedora, which is officially supported. Following the instructions you can have Scisoft ready in a few minutes and then what is left is to run the software.

For bash users type (“dot space” at the beginning):

. /scisoft/bin/Setup.bash

and csh/tcsh users:

source /scisoft/bin/Setup.csh

Most probably though the Scisoft will not start at all, as a check message about the SELinux is printed. Fedora comes with SELinux enabled by default which may create problems with some applications (like inmidas and PyRAF). The best solution is to disable this feature and to do so you have to edit the /etc/selinux/config (as root). What you will see is this text:

# This file controls the state of SELinux on the system.
# SELINUX= can take one of these three values:
# enforcing - SELinux security policy is enforced.
# permissive - SELinux prints warnings instead of enforcing.
# disabled - No SELinux policy is loaded.
# SELINUXTYPE= can take one of these two values:
# targeted - Only targeted network daemons are protected.
# strict - Full SELinux protection.

where you change SELINUX= value from enforcing to disabled. Then if you run again the Scisoft will normally start and you can select you application by typing the appropriate keyword (like cl for IRAF, pyraf for PyRAF, etc).

There is still a warning message appearing about nm:
bash: nm: command not found...
Though it seems not to affect, it is better to go on and install the ‘binutils’ package (binutils collection of binary tools) and be sure that everything will be totally safe (go on and install it with yum install).

In order to avoid typing all the time this long command to start Scisoft an alias can be created easily at the .bashrc file, by adding this line:

alias scisoft='. /scisoft/bin/Setup.bash'

Then, just typing ‘scisoft’ is enough to invoke the programs.

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