A remote data access module in Tecplot 360*

SZL Server is a lightweight application that is installed on your HPC, data server or remote file store (including cloud resources like Amazon’s AWS). Data transfer is fast and secure. The server side leverages our SZL technology to transfer only the data required to generate a specific plot. Your simulation results must be converted to SZL file format (.szplt) as a prerequisite.

  • Lightweight data server – no graphics rendering and fewer CPU and RAM resources required than when the rendering is done on the server.
  • Fast model manipulation – The rendering is done locally which means zooming, translating, and rotating are just as fast if the data had been local.
  • Secure data transfer – Encrypted data transfer via SSH is an option to keep your data secure.

Try Tecplot 360 for free   Download SZL Server


Watch MP4 Video | View the Datasheet (PDF)

*SZL Server is available to Tecplot 360 customers with TecPLUS service.

Improved Secure Performance

SZL Server supports two-factor authentication and password authentication for SSH connections. Performance for data sets with a large number of zones is improved. In our test involving a 681-million-cell simulation with 81 time steps accessed from Tecplot SZL Server over a SSH-tunneled connection, the time needed to open the file and display all time steps in sequence was cut in half – from 1,737 seconds to 834 seconds – compared to pre-2017 version of Tecplot 360.

SZL Server Benchmark
Tecplot Release Time to First Image Plus Animating Through 81 Time Steps
(with Encrypted “Tunneled” Connection)
2017 R1 1737 seconds
2017 R2 834 seconds – twice as fast!

 

SZL Server FAQs

Q: Where do I get the SZL Server?

SZL Server is included in the Tecplot 360 installation in the “szlserver” folder. It is also available as a separate download (above).

Q: How do I install and run SZL Server?

First install Tecplot 360 on the client machine and find the szlserver directory in the install directory. This folder contains an installation script to be run on Linux platforms.

SZL Server uses SSH and will also require an SSH public/private key pair.
Once the server component is installed, run Tecplot 360 and choose the File->Load Remote Data… option. Fill in the machine name, user name, supply a private SSH key, and press Connect. This will start the server and make the connection. You can now load data from the remote machine.

Q: How does SZL Server work?

SZL Server uses our subzone load-on-demand technology to transfer small chunks of volume data (subzones) from the server to the client. Compared to architectures that load the full data and do extractions on the server side, SZL Server loads less data and does less work on the server side – meaning that it can be much faster to get to the first image.

This also makes SZL Server very lightweight on the server side – its primary responsibility is to load data, which requires no graphics resources and relatively little RAM and CPU resources. The client side is responsible for the rendering and data processing. This also means that there is no rendering latency which can be common with remote desktop solutions.

Q: Can I use SZL Server on a Virtual Machine?

Of course! Most of our testing was done on Linux VMs and we’ve done some testing using Amazon’s EC2 as well. Tecplot 360 (the client side) is best run on real hardware with a modern graphics card.

Q: Can I open layout files and run macros on the remote machine?
Layouts and macros must reside on the client side and reference remote data. SZL Server is a server side data provider that requires the data to be in Tecplot’s SZL file format. SZL Server can only load Tecplot SZL data files.

Q: How do I convert my data to SZL format?

If you’re using FUN3D, VULCAN-CFD, or Tau (DLR) or a growing list of other codes, you can export SZL format directly from your solver. Any file format supported by Tecplot 360 can be converted to SZL. Learn how to convert your data to SZL by viewing the video and written tutorials on our SZL Technology page. Tecplot 360 2017 R1 includes a new command line option -convert, which allows you to convert your data without checking out a license. Here’s a short video showing 3 methods of Converting your data to SZL.

Q: What if I perform an action that requires me to save my data when I save the layout?

Operations like slice extraction will require the dataset to be saved to a new file. In this case the data will be required to be saved locally, which will cause the entire data set to be streamed across the SSH connection.

Q: Can I load both local and remote data in a single Tecplot 360 session?

Yes! You can load data via SZL Server in one frame in Tecplot 360 and load any other data into another frame. You can even load data from multiple servers into each frame. Loading multiple datasets and appending into a single frame are not yet supported.

Q: Which platforms are supported by SZL Server?

The server side is supported on Linux only. The client side will work on any platform supported by Tecplot 360. See the Tecplot 360 requirements.

Q: Do I need a separate license to run SZL Server?

SZL Server itself does not require a license, however the client side requires Tecplot 360 with an active TecPLUS subscription.