UMUI over VNC
Due to the design of the UMUI it runs extremely slowly over long-distance connections (e.g. checking UMUI jobs on Puma from Australia)
One way to get around this slowness is to use a VNC viewer. VNC works by drawing the display on the remote system then forwarding a picture of that display (rather than sending individual draw commands over the network)
First, start a VNC server on Puma, looking for local connections:
swales@puma $ vncserver -localhost
It will ask you to create a password to secure the connection (this is just so other Puma users can't see your screen). Once the vncserver has started it will tell you your display number, e.g. `New 'X' desktop is puma:10`.
Next you need to connect that display port to your local computer, which you can do using SSH. VNC uses the network port 5900 + *n*, where *n* is the display ID (in our case the display will be at port 5910 since we've been given display 10). By forwarding the port over SSH we can make it visible on our own computer:
scott@walesnix $ ssh -N -L 5901:localhost:5910 firstname.lastname@example.org
This command will stay running while the connection is open and won't produce any output, once the VNC session is over you can exit using Ctrl-c. The command connects port 5901 on your local machine to port 5910 on Puma, so when you look at VNC display 1 on your own computer you really see VNC display 10 on the remote server.
To view the VNC screen run on a new terminal (while the ssh command is still running):
scott@walesnix $ vncviewer localhost:1
You should be asked for the VNC password you entered when you started the server, then the display will open with a terminal from which you can start the UMUI (Remember by default the UMUI list will be empty if you don't own any jobs on Puma).
Once you're finished remember to clean up the VNC server on Puma using 'vncserver -kill 10' (substituting in the correct display ID)
Instructions adapted from http://www.science.smith.edu/~ejensen/vncssh.html