NoMachine's NX technology provides groups of staff, academic users and industrial researchers remote access to all 18 beamlines at Diamond Light Source to increase project mobility and flexibility. With NX, users can access the Diamond Linux desktop environment from anywhere and reduce project runtime with the ability to access the beamlines and perform experiments remotely.
Located in South Oxfordshire and partly funded by the government, Diamond Light Source (diamond.ac.uk) is the UK national synchrotron facility that generates brilliant beams of light used in a wide range of applications for structural biology, fundamental physics, chemistry and cultural heritage. Representing the largest UK scientific investment for 40 years, Diamond Light Source can ultimately host up to 40 beamlines.
The main NX Server deployed at Diamond is used for direct access to a Linux desktop and applications from inside or outside the facility and can have more than 20 NX sessions running simultaneously. Furthermore, with an NX Server installed on each principal beamline workstation, both local and remote users have the ability to access and control the beamline from their own personal
workstation regardless of their location.
Diamond's wide range of user groups have high expectations for performance, reliability and security. As the longer established beamlines increase the amount of experiments that can be operated remotely, NX provides fast and secure remote desktop capability in near real-time. From any location, materials can be shipped to Diamond to be analyzed and then all further manipulation and experimentation can be performed using NX for remote access.
The unique compression and caching features of NX provide optimal performance allowing users to work with heavy graphical applications to perform experiments remotely. NoMachine NX delivers a desktop exactly like they would experience if present on the beamline at the facility. NX enables users to run sophisticated experiment control and data acquistion software to see results from the detectors almost instantly as if they were on the local machine.
NX offers noticeable time and cost savings with a comparatively inexpensive solution for Diamond's Linux-based science computing environment, providing access to standard office type applications in addition to beamline software. Users are presented with applications like e-mail readers, Web browsers, MatLab and custom Diamond software to access detailed information about the beamline.
Remote access with NX also enables administrators to access software at Diamond from home to perform remote troubleshooting and maintenance. Some beamlines have even experimented with desktop shadowing to remotely diagnose problems that facility users might be experiencing.
All Diamond workstations have NX installed by default, providing a straightforward and easy way to access a Linux desktop, applications, Diamond beamlines and other resources from any operating system anywhere.
Senior Linux Administrator, Greg Matthews, said, “By providing a full desktop experience, NX provides for sophisticated experiments to be performed completely remotely, thereby enabling science that might otherwise never be possible.”
Based in Rome, Italy, NoMachine (nomachine.com) is the creator of award-winning NX software, an enterprise-class solution for secure remote access, application delivery, and hosted desktop deployment. Since 2001, NoMachine's mission has been to revolutionize the way users access their computing resources across the Internet to make seamless desktop access as easy and widespread as Web browsing. NoMachine provides a comprehensive software infrastructure stack, core development, and support services built around the self-designed and self-developed NX suite of advanced components.