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Salome Application Concept

The following explains how to configure your own application with your list of modules, how to define and run this application on one or more computers.

General principles

A SALOME application is defined by a set of modules (GEOM, SMESH, ASTER...). A SALOME application lives in an application directory. A SALOME application is a virtual installation of SALOME in the application directory (bin, lib, doc, share...), with, for each file (executable, script, data, library, resources...), symbolic links to the actual files.

A SALOME User can define several SALOME Applications. These applications are runnable from the same user account. These applications may share the same KERNEL and modules. Thus, the application configuration is independant of KERNEL and must not be put in KERNEL_ROOT_DIR.

Furthermore, prerequisites may not be the same on all the applications.

A SALOME Session can run on a several computers.

Binary modules and prerequisites are installed on the different computers. There is no need to have all the modules on each computer (the minimum is KERNEL).

There is no need of standardization or centralised information on the details of configuration on each computer (PATH, LD_LIBRARY_PATH, environment variables) provided the application modules are version - compatible. Details of configuration stay private to the computer, and are held by scripts on each computer.

There is no hierarchy between the computers (for example only one master computer used to launch application).

The SALOME user has an account on all the computers. Access between account is via rsh or ssh and must be configured for use without password (key exchange for ssh). Account may be different on each computer.

Application Directory

First, the user must create a SALOME application configuration file by modifying a copy of ${KERNEL_ROOT_DIR}/bin/salome/config_appli.xml. The file describes the list of SALOME modules used in the application, with their respective installation path. The configuration file also defines the path of an existing script which sets the SALOME prerequisites (tag "prerequisites"), and optionally, the path of samples directory (SAMPLES_SRC) (tag "samples") and the path of a catalog of resources (tag "resources").

The following command:

python <KERNEL_ROOT_DIR>/bin/salome/ --prefix=<install directory> --config=<configuration file>

creates a SALOME application in the application directory given by the prefix option (local directory by default) with the configuration file given by the config option (config_appli.xml by default).

Providing an existing script for SALOME prerequisites (the same one used for modules compilation, or given with the modules installation), the installation works without further modification for a single computer (unless some modules needs a special environment not defined in the above script).

For a distributed application (several computers), one must copy and adapt CatalogResources.xml from ${KERNEL_ROOT_DIR}/bin/salome/appliskel (see below).

General rules

The application directory must be created on each computer of the application. The easiest way is to use the same relative path (to ${HOME}) on each computer. (Sometimes it is not possible to use the same path everywhere, for instance when ${HOME} is shared with NFS, so it is possible to define different path following the computers).

The application directory contains scripts for environment and runs. Environment scripts must be configured (by the user) on each computer. All the environment scripts are in the env.d subdirectory.

The script envd sources all the files (*.sh) in subdirectory env.d in alphanumeric order (after edition, think to remove backup files). The envd script is used by run scripts.

  1. env.d scripts

    env.d scripts are built automatically.

    You can add your own environment scripts in env.d subdirectory, they will be sourced as the generated ones provided they have a .sh extension.

  2. User run scripts

    The SALOME user can use 4 scripts:

    • runAppli
      Launches a SALOME Session (similar to ${KERNEL_ROOT_DIR}/bin/salome/runSalome but with a different name to avoid confusions). See parameters below.
    • runSession
      Launches a shell script in the SALOME application environment, with access to the current (last launched) SALOME session (naming service), if any. Without arguments, the script is interactive. With arguments, the script executes the command in the SALOME application environment.
    • runConsole
      Gives a python console connected to the current SALOME Session. It is also possible to use runSession, then python.
    • runTests
      Similar to runSession, used for unit testing, but runSession tries to use an already existing naming service definition from a running session (hostname and port number), and runTests defines a new configuration for naming service (new port number).
  3. SALOME internal run scripts

    • envd
      Sets SALOME application environment, envd is sourced by other scripts.

    For remote calls, SALOME uses one script.

      This script is mainly used to launch containers. The first 3 arguments define the hostname and port userd for naming service, plus a working directory, the remaining arguments define the command to execute.
  4. Other configuration files

    • SALOMEApp.xml
      This file is similar to the default given in ${GUI_ROOT_DIR}/share/SALOME/resources/gui
    • CatalogRessources.xml
      This file describes all the computers the application can use. The given example is minimal and suppose application directory is the same relative path to ${HOME}, on all the computers. A different directory can be set on a particular computer with a line:

Examples of use

  1. Launch a SALOME session with a GUI interface

    Launch is done with a command like:

    ./runAppli --logger

    The –logger option means here : collect all the traces from the all the distributed process, via CORBA, in a single file : logger.log.

    There are a lot of options, a complete list is given by:

    ./runAppli --help

    Note that, without argument, runAppli is a non interactive Python application, and, with arguments, runAppli is an interactive Python interpreter.

    Several options are already defined by default in SALOMEApp.xml files. Optional arguments given in the command override the SALOMEApp.xml configuration.

    Several sessions can run simultaneously, each session use a different port for CORBA naming service, so the sessions are totally separated from each other.

    When the GUI is closed, the different SALOME servers are still running.

  2. Close a SALOME session, kill all the servers

    Inside the interactive python interpreter you get when you use runAppli with arguments, you can kill all the servers of your session with:

    or the servers of all the sessions with:

    >>> killAllPorts()

    If you have no active Python interpreter connected to your session, you can kill all the SALOME servers of all the sessions on a given computer:


    Remember! it's the same idea in Windows (R) operating system (Microsoft and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries) : use the start menu to stop...

    When you use only one session at a time, you don't need more.

    To kill a given session (when several session are running), one needs the naming service port number:

    ./runSession killSalomeWithPort 2810

    Note that the port number of the last launched session can be found on Linux, in the prompt, within a runSession shell (see below).

    It is also possible to get the Naming Service host and port number of the last launched session with:


  3. Launch a SALOME session without GUI interface

    This is used to launch a SALOME Python script without GUI (no GUI server = SALOME_session_server)

    Example of script (

    import salome_session
    import GEOM_usinggeom
    raw_input("Press a key and the servers will be killed ...")

    This script is run in a non interactive way with:

    ./runSession python

    All the process are automatically killed when Python is closed (with SALOME_session delete).

  4. Add an external Python interpretor to a running session

    It's often easier to develop and try Python scripts outside the GUI embedded Python interpreter. Imagine, for instance, you are writing a script involving geometry and mesh modules. first, launch a SALOME session with gui, then, on another terminal:


    Import salome module. salome_init() without arguments creates a new study in the running session (note: salome_init(n) attachs to a running session whose studyId is n):

    import salome

    An example of script given with SMESH:

    import ex01_cube2build

    It is possible to connect the GUI interface to the study created in the above script with the file/connect menu, then browse study and display objects. Further modifications on study can be done either with GUI or external script (use refresh popup in GUI object browser to see study modifications generated by the external script). AVOID modifications with GUI when a Python script is running. Not all the modules are protected against concurrent actions...

  5. Different uses of the runSession shell interpreter

    runSession invoked without arguments gives an interactive shell with the full environment of SALOME (PATH, LD_LIBRARY_PATH, PYTHONPATH, other variables). If there are running sessions of the same SALOME application, runSession connects to the last launched session (i.e. gets the naming service references of the session: hostname and port)

    On Linux, the shell prompt (bash) gives information on naming service references, hostname and port:


    If there is no running session, prompt looks like:


    runSession is useful to launch any script or program which needs the complete SALOME environment, with or without a session already running. For instance, to launch the ddd debugger interface on the gui server, first launch a SALOME session with gui, then, on another terminal:

    ./runSession ddd

    Then attach to the running SALOME_Session_Server process.