a. Create a cluster configured with NICE DCV

Support for dcv_settings is supported in AWS ParallelCluster 2.5.0 or above.

In order to enable NICE DCV, a few changes to the config file need to be made. There’s a complete config file included below with key changes:

  1. To enable NICE DCV on the Master node

    • Add a line dcv_settings = default to the [cluster default] section of the config file.
    • Create a dcv section that references the value you chose for the dcv_settings and include the line enable = master
    • The NICE DCV software is automatically installed on the master instance when using base_os = alinux2, base_os = centos7, or base_os = ubuntu1804. We will use base_os = centos7 for this tutorial.
  2. Modify Master Nodes:

    • We will deploy the cluster with a GPU-enabled Master instance since the master node is hosting NICE DCV remote desktop sessions.
    • Modify the master_instance_type = g4dn.xlarge. This will be a cost-effective option for graphics intensive applications

For more details about the NICE DCV configuration options in AWS ParallelCLuster, see the NICE DCV section in AWS ParallelCluster User Guide.

First we’ll create a keypair:

# generate a new keypair, remove those lines if you want to use the previous one
aws ec2 create-key-pair --key-name lab-dcv-key --query KeyMaterial --output text > ~/.ssh/lab-dcv-key
chmod 600 ~/.ssh/lab-dcv-key

Then we’ll create a config file, paste the following commands in your terminal. Note DCV-related items are highlighted:

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IFACE=$(curl --silent http://169.254.169.254/latest/meta-data/network/interfaces/macs/)
SUBNET_ID=$(curl --silent http://169.254.169.254/latest/meta-data/network/interfaces/macs/${IFACE}/subnet-id)
VPC_ID=$(curl --silent http://169.254.169.254/latest/meta-data/network/interfaces/macs/${IFACE}/vpc-id)
AZ=$(curl http://169.254.169.254/latest/meta-data/placement/availability-zone)
REGION=${AZ::-1}

cd ~/environment
cat > my-dcv-cluster.ini << EOF
[aws]
aws_region_name = ${REGION}

[global]
cluster_template = default
update_check = false
sanity_check = true

[cluster default]
key_name = lab-dcv-key
base_os = centos7
vpc_settings = public
master_instance_type = g4dn.xlarge
compute_instance_type = c4.xlarge
cluster_type = ondemand
placement_group = DYNAMIC
placement = compute
initial_queue_size = 0
max_queue_size = 8
disable_hyperthreading = true
s3_read_write_resource = *
scheduler = slurm
dcv_settings = default

[dcv default]
enable = master

[vpc public]
vpc_id = ${VPC_ID}
master_subnet_id = ${SUBNET_ID}

[aliases]
ssh = ssh {CFN_USER}@{MASTER_IP} {ARGS}
EOF

Now, you are ready to launch a cluster with Remote Desktop enabled using NICE DCV on your master node! Proceed to the next section.