Yes, with some restrictions. As long as you have an x86 based PC with at least 8Mb RAM running Linux (other OS's will follow) you can run the latest IRAF as well as all of the X11IRAF utilities and external packages. DOS/Windows are insufficient for running IRAF but we may eventually support other systems such as Windows NT.
FreeBSD 3.3 Slackware Linux 4.0 RedHat Linux 5.x RedHat Linux 6.x SuSE Linux 6.x Solaris x86 7
A minimal system should have at least
16 Mb RAM 500 Mb disk 15" 1024x768 8-bit monitor 486-33DX processor
IRAF will probably run with as little as 8Mb RAM but the system will most likely be paging heavily, especially if the X server is also running.
A recommended system would have
128 Mb RAM 9+ Gb SCSI/EIDE disk 17" 1600x1200 8-bit monitor P-600 or faster processor
A suitable desktop or deskside PC-IRAF system should have 1 Gb or more of disk and 64-128 Mb of memory; half this system would work but we wouldn't recommend it. A Pentium CPU and a PCI backplane are recommended. There are indications that PCI (or at least a fast local bus) makes a big difference in the overall performance of the newer PCs. A large system cache (256 Kb is common on current systems) is necessary to realize the speed of the newer processors. A DAT/Exabyte might also be preferred to import data if the machine is not on a fast network.
The following summarizes the disk requirements in megabytes for the major components of IRAF after installation (uncompress and untar). These values will vary depending on the platform.
Component Size (Mb) Comment --------- ---------- ------------ AS 70 All sources IB 20 normal CORE iraf binaries NB 25 normal NOAO package binaries
We strongly recommend that Linux/IRAF be downloaded from our anonymous ftp archive distribution ftp://iraf.noao.edu/iraf/v211/PCIX, this is not only free but means you can download any recent patches as well. A CD-ROM distribution is also available (see below) for a cost of $53 US that includes external packages, documentation and contributed software but since these discs are produced by-hand there may be a slight delay in filling the order (interested users should fill out and return the orderform.
For some of the major external packages not supported by IRAF (e.g. STSDAS/TABLES), check ftp://iraf.noao.edu/contrib. For IRAF sponsored packages look in ftp://iraf.noao.edu/iraf/extern for contact site support if you have problems building from the sources.
IRAF is available on CD-ROM by filling out and sending the orderform found at our website. This is currently a V2.11.3 distribution CD containing the V2.11 systems presently in release, as well as documentation, external packages, and contributed software also available from the archive. The cost is $35 plus a standard $23 shipping and handling charge. We are planning a PC-IRAF runtime CD-ROM so IRAF needn't be installed directly on the hard drive.
As long as you have sufficient disk, memory, and Linux or other supported Unixes are running, yes!
This is a common question but one that can't really be answered accurately. A lot depends on which distribution of Linux you have (see below), how much you know about the hardware and Unix system management, and the type of system you have. Linux is a high-quality Unix implementation and lots of help is available on the net for new users, pointers to various CD distributors can be found on pciraf.html. For a "standard configuration" installation is usually made easier by installation scripts for Linux that do most of the real work for you, configuration of networking, local printers, X, etc may be left to the user once the base system is installed. It's not a bad idea to try an installation once and then do it again once you know what's required.
Linux is freely available via anonymous ftp from several sites (a good place to start would be sunsite.unc.edu, redhat.com, debian.org, etc) or an be ordered on CD-ROM from various distributors who package the system for easier installation, but for a cost of $15-$60 depending on the vendor.
PC-IRAF V2.11.3 was built using FreeBSD 3.2, Slackware 4.0 (LNUX), Red Hat 6.1 (RHUX), SuSE 6.3 (SUSE), and Solaris 7 (SOL7). Support is also available for RedHat 5.x systems but users should consult the note at the end of the distribution README file for special installation instructions.
Several distributions of Linux are supported directly because these are the most popular with users and they represent different "flavors" of Linux currently available. In most cases the Slackware (LNUX) binaries will work on any platform not named explicitly here (Debian, Corel, etc) but since Linux distributions change much more rapidly than IRAF it may be that for a certain distribution version a different IRAF binary will be required.
Many common problems and installation considerations are discussed in the various "HOWTO" documents at the Linux FTP sites, these have also been compiled into a book from O'Reilly Assoc. called _Running Linux_ by Matt Welsh. There are also numerous FAQs and documentation in circulation. If you have a specific question and can't find help in these documents, the best solution is to post a question to the comp.os.linux newsgroups, the users on the net can be very helpful and have likely encountered the same problems themselves. For a starting point on Linux help see our PC-IRAF web page at pciraf.html.
This is most often the case with new hardware (e.g. SCSI adapters or video/sound cards) where drivers for these boards haven't yet been written for the Linux kernel. It's usually only a matter of a few months before somebody on the net will contribute a driver for the hardware and support will appear in one of the almost weekly kernel releases. Care should be taken though when installing the Linux system if you're in fact installing a new distribution that may include something like ELF binaries which may not be supported by IRAF itself. Kernel updates can be done independent of a full installation which is the best route to add support for new hardware. If you have a clone board for something like a sound card (which IRAF won't use) or SCSI adapter that isn't a true clone you can also run into problems. For these situations consult the net for advice on what can be used as a workaround, in some cases there will be no workaround so the best advice for new hardware purchases is to research or use only "standard" components in your hardware.