High Performance Computing (HPC) systems, such as that provided by the RCS Platforms team, are typically designed to support non-interactive or batch workloads. However, the RCS understand that some workloads can only be carried out interactively and that some user’s computers have insufficient resources to support them. For this reason, the RCS provide several web-based services that enable interactive work to be carried out on HPC systems; these services are described below.

Please note that you must be registered with the HPC service to use these interactive services; please see the Get Access to High Performance Computing page for further information.


The Jupyter Notebook enables users to create documents that combine live code with narrative text, mathematical equations, visualizations, interactive controls, and other rich output. It also provides building blocks for interactive computing with data: a file browser, terminals, and a text editor.

JupyterHub is a web service enabling multiple users to run their Jupyter Notebooks on shared resources. The Imperial College RCS team provide a JupyterHub service which runs interactive Jupyter notebook sessions on HPC hardware by running them as "batch" jobs. Please see the Jupyter user guide on ReadtheDocs for more information.

RStudio via Open OnDemand

Open OnDemand (OOD) is a service that enables interactive applications to run as "batch" jobs on a normal HPC facility; these applications are then accessed via a web browser. The OOD service at Imperial is primarily focused on enabling RStudio to run on the HPC service. Please see the Open OnDemand user guide on ReadtheDocs.