TUIs, a Smoke-Jumping Admin’s Best Friend


A system administrator’s job is to keep systems running smoothly and effectively at all times, which means having to triage misbehaving nodes from time to time. In HPC, these nodes often don’t have a display adapter or has one that is having problems. Being able to log in to the node and use quasi-graphical interfaces over port 22 is a real blessing. You can test applications and monitor the system with the use of TUIs. Although often ignored, believe me, they are very useful in the admin world.

Moreover, TUIs are not difficult to write. With tools from various libraries and the help of online examples, you can create your own tool suited to your situation. Python or C is a great way to get started. If you write something or use TUIs on a daily or weekly basis, please give a shout-out on Twitter – I’m sure everyone would love to learn more.