Running simulations in a Workgroup

For this guide we will use InfoWorks WS PRO as the example. All other Innovyze products will work in a similar manner, when configuring workgroup simulations (only if they support workgroup simulations).

How does it Work

We generally talk about a Local Agent to identify the machine where the local user is currently working on (it could be either a physical PC or a Virtual Machine) and Remote Agent to identify the dedicated resource which is supposed to perform the simulation run.

The minimum software installation required for all scenarios is that InfoWorks WS Pro is installed on at least one device (Local Agent). If the system is to support running remote simulations, the InfoWorks Remote Agent will need to be installed on all the devices nominated to host remote simulations.

When two or more devices are configured to host simulations, one of the devices needs to be nominated as the “coordinator”. This device will manage the distribution of simulations and control how and when simulations are issued to other (remote) devices in the workgroup.

The chosen device does not have to be one that is also available to run simulations, and if that is the case, does not have to be a very powerful PC but must have either InfoWorks WS Pro or InfoWorks Remote Agent installed.

Setting up the first computer

Consider the 3 areas shown:

Clicking the “WS Agent options” button in the right hand section allows us to configure specific items for the agent. The item most commonly requiring attention is the “Max concurrent jobs”. This should be set accordingly to the number of cores that may be utilised on the device to run jobs.

It is sometimes prudent not to use all cores or this can make the machine appear unresponsive to an interactive user. However, one should be aware that it is not always the case that a device will complete 2 concurrent jobs faster than it would do the 2 jobs back-to-back. A lot depends on the device configuration, the memory requirements of a given model and also any other background tasks the computer is performing.

Important!

For jobs such as Critical Link Analysis it is strongly suggested that the “max concurrent jobs” be reduced by up to a half, as each job that runs consumes two cores concurrently at certain periods.

The port numbers should be left as is but if changed, then all devices that are part of the workgroup should have identical values set otherwise they will not be able to communicate with each other.

Setting up a Workgroup/Coordinator

The configuration may be carried out in different ways depending on the software installed on the device designated as the co-ordinator. If InfoWorks WS Pro is installed on the device then configuration may be done as shown below, otherwise the “Water Supply Manager” from the desktop icon or the Windows Start Menu may be used. (This is described in the later section Setting up a computer to be a Remote Agent).

Here we are specifying that this agent is going to act as the co-ordinator, that it can act as a remote agent (run jobs launched from elsewhere or locally from the user interface) using the specified licence.

The maximum number of concurrent jobs will be as specified in the WS Agent options as described previously. Additionally now though, the “Configure” button has been enabled; selecting this option allows us to configure specific settings for the co-ordinator.

Here we may specify groups of devices, e.g. we may have a set of user machines that are not usable during normal working hours as they are in use, but in the evening they could be utilised for running simulations etc. The groups may be added/removed as required as may the devices that constitute the group. The group description will be visible in InfoWorks WS Pro user interface when a run is to be launched/scheduled. The dropdown for “Remote agents are listed individually” allows a choice as to whether the agents are hidden / shown in the choice of agents visible in the InfoWorks WS Pro user interface.

Now when we save the configuration we see the list in the left hand area contains at least two entries… “Local Agent” and “Coordinator”.

Saving Configuration

When saving a configuration to an agent, it is possible to load the configuration from one agent and save to a different one. Always ensure that the agent selected on the left is the desired destination.

Other devices that have already been configured may also appear in the list. They may also be configured/reconfigured from here.

Setting up a computer to be a Remote Agent

Where a device will be utilised to run simulations, but not for a user to build models or analyse results etc. it is only necessary to install the InfoWorks Remote Agent software.

On such a device, the initial configuration needs to be carried out using the “Water Supply Manager” from the desktop icon or the Windows Start Menu.

Important!

Before making any changes to a particular service, the relevant service should be stopped.

The “Agent” selection contains very similar settings to the main workgroup client detailed above.

WS Marshaller

There is no configuration required as such for the WSMarshaller service. This service sits between InfoWorks WS Pro and the local WS Agent and controls the process of a run, dispatching jobs to the local agent as soon as pre-requisite jobs / processing have been concluded.

The WSMarshaller does not decide where jobs will be run except for jobs that have been specifically configured to be run locally.