*Whether your preferred *tool of choice is the legendary Swiss Army knife or the versatile Leatherman tool, everyone can agree that there is no substitute for a great tool that helps you get the job done.
The Launcher is the primary user interface within both Anaconda Community Edition and Anaconda Pro that includes a number of helpful tools that can make otherwise difficult, or at least tedious and time consuming tasks, much easier and fool-proof.
Anaconda CE can be downloaded free of charge. The Launcher in the CE version has all the same features as the Pro version except for the ability to configure other Python environments.
Let’s cover the following features within Anaconda:****
Easily configure other Python environments (Pro Only)
Quick view of the Disco cluster status (CE and Pro)
Open a web-based terminal to other Anaconda nodes (CE and Pro)
Quick access to the full, online Anaconda Document Suite (CE and Pro).
Configure Python Environments
A long sought goal of many a data cruncher is the ability to easily configure custom Python environments, where each environment contains different versions of Python, Numpy, Scipy, and the like, so they can experiment with various scripts and well known packages within the Python sphere.
With the Launcher Config tool a user can create custom Python environments that includes a unique set of pre-built packages.
The Launcher will automatically include all packages, and their dependencies, in the newly created environment.
Each environment has a unique name and path so multiple environments can be created on the same box.
Disco Cluster Status
The Launcher home page shows a listing of your Disco cluster nodes. Each node includes a brief overview of its status. The Launcher’s ultimate goal is to provide easy setup, configuration, and management of your Disco and other cluster technologies.
The Launcher provides the option to open a terminal to any other Anaconda cluster node from your web browser. The node can be remote or the localhost but it must be running a shellinabox server daemon. The full shellinabox package is include in Anaconda and is easy to install and configure.
To open a terminal the user simply clicks on the Terminal button to see the connect dialog.
The terminal works as a basic VT100 terminal session. The example below shows a terminal session running top. Of course, you may also choose to run an interactive python or iPython session as well.
Quick Access to Documentation
The Anaconda Documentation button on the upper right corner gives you quick access to the online Anaconda Documentation Suite (ADS). The ADS is a compilation of popular Python related documentation all in a single place. ADS provides integrated search across all the documents.
Running The Launcher
Running the Launcher is easy
Install Anaconda CE or Pro
Add the Anaconda bin folder to your path
Enter anaconda-launcher at the command line.
“Beware of the tyranny of making small changes to small things. Rather, make big changes to big things.” — Roger Enrico, former chairman, Pepsico
At Continuum Analytics we are working to make big changes. The Launcher is just one of many steps toward that goal. We are looking forward to adding many more features to Anaconda and the Launcher very soon.