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EZLaunch: Tools to run slurm jobs with launcher

Project description


Programs for managing job submission through slurm.

These scripts can be used to submit jobs for a cluster running the slurm scheduler. Some scripts are designed with neuroimaging data in mind, for example running a single command to process data from multiple participants in an experiment can be done using slaunch.


To install the most recent release from PyPI, run:

pip install ezlaunch

To install the latest version on GitHub, run:

pip install git+

Verify installation by running launch -h.


The launch programs can use information about cluster configuration to fill in blanks (e.g., the number of cores available on each node) and to make sure you're not going over limits of the queue you're submitting to (e.g., a maximum number of nodes).

The configuration is specified using TOML files, which have a simple format. Global settings should go under a [global] heading, while partition-specific settings should go under a heading with the name of that partition. For example (here, "normal" and "development" are two partitions):

account = "myAccountName"

cores = 56
max-nodes = 1280

cores = 56
max-nodes = 40

This sets the default account to use when submitting jobs. It also sets the number of cores and the maximum number of nodes per job for the normal and development partitions. You may also set a max-cores option to restrict the number of total cores used by a job.

The launch programs will look for a configuration file at $HOME/.launch.toml. If you set the LAUNCH_CONFIG environment variable, launch will look there instead.

EZ Launch

In contrast to launch, which is relatively low level, ezlaunch manages command, batch script, and output files automatically. To use ezlaunch, set the BATCHDIR environment variable to indicate the directory in which job commands, slurm options, and output should be saved.

For example, you could submit a job to a slurm cluster using something like:

ezlaunch -J myjob 'echo "hello world"' -N 1 -n 1 -r 00:10:00 -p normal

After the job runs, you would have the following files:

$BATCHDIR/     # job commands 
$BATCHDIR/myjob1.slurm  # slurm options (run time, number of nodes, etc.)
$BATCHDIR/myjob1.out    # output from all commands

If you run another job named "myjob", that will be saved under "", etc.

Running a command for multiple subjects

The scripts slaunch and rlaunch run a given command on combinations of subjects and runs. These scripts can optionally use the SUBJIDFORMAT environment variable. This allows automatic conversion between subject numbers (e.g., 5) and subject IDs (e.g., sub-05). For that example, you would set:

export SUBJIDFORMAT='sub-%02d'

Then subject number lists can be converted, for example subjids 1:2:3 will produce sub-01:sub-02:sub-03.


  • Neal Morton
  • Russ Poldrack - wrote original launch script

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