Instructions to Run and Test the
AEELab Remote Launcher Software Package
instruction set is intended to be a guide for users wishing to use
the Remote Launcher to
out experiments with AEELab software. You can navigate this page by
using the table of contents below, and you can always return to the top
of this page by clicking the link [top] that is located at the bottom
of each instruction section.
What does the "Remote
Launcher" do ?
When running experiments it is often a requirement to have
machines in a lab run a particular program (such as a web-browser or
experiment simulator) at the same time as each other. This extends
to the ability to remotely issue machines with commands so that the
experimenter has full control over the running of an experiment
Remote Launcher is based on a client-server
1. The Remote
Launcher Server , which resides on a single computer accessible
by the experimenter. This allows the experimenter to issue commands to
one or more of the other computers in the lab network.
2. The Remote
Launcher Client, which is a small Java program that resides on
each computer in the lab network. This receives commands from the Remote
Launcher Server and processes them on the local machine.
are launched from the Remote Launcher Server
by issuing single commands into a command window or by running a script
to Setup a Lab Room
Ensure that Java Run Time Environment 1.5.0 or later has already been
installed on each computer. If you unsure whether Java has already
been installed, you can carry a web browser test available here
A copy of a
functioning (though not neccessarily the most
recent) copy of the java software can be downloaded from the
experiments page from here
Choose a computer to be the Server. Copy the entire
contents of the file "RemoteLauncherWorkingDirectory.zip" onto this
computer, and unzip the file. A directory called
"RemoteLauncherServer" will be created.
a look inside the RemoteLauncherServer directory. It should contain:
a directory called images, another
directory called scripts, an
executable file called RemoteLauncherServer.jar and a text file named
RemoteLauncherConfiguration.txt -Without these 4 items, you will be
unable to load the Control Panel.
RemoteLauncherConfiguration.txt contains information about the layout
of the computers in the lab network, according to their IP addresses
( an example is shown below).
Download the remote launcher client, RemoteLaunchClient.jar onto
each participant computer in the lab. For ease of download, you may
find that this file has been zipped, in which case you will need to
extract the contents of the file by right-clicking and selecting
"extract here". It can be downloaded to any directory you wish,
but must be somewhere easily accessible (The desktop would be ideal).
available from the software page
. Run the program by double clicking on the icon, if the program does
not open with Java 1.5 by
default you will need to do it manually by right-clicking and
selecting “Open with....Java ” . If Java is not one of the options
listed, click on the "Choose Program" option on the drop-down menu
which will allow you to browse your computer to select the Java program.
the Client has started,
it will indicate that it has identified the network details of the
client computer as shown below.
to use the Remote Launcher Control Panel
the “RemoteLauncherWorkingDirectory” directory, and run the
executable file RemoteLauncherServer.jar . The Remote
program has two parts, The example room
and The Experiment Launcher Control Panel which will
open in separate windows:
layout of the computer network within the lab, and each client
computer is colour-coded to show its status.
Launcher Control Panel
Launcher Control Panel
allows the user to launch and end programs on any/all of the other
computers in the labs. This can be done in two ways:
You can load
a script, which is a text file that contains a series of commands,
saving the user the repetitive work of loading each single command
To load a
script, right click on the panel under “Run Script File”, this will
cause a drop-down menu to occure. Select Add script to list
from the menu and browse for the script file you wish to run.
script files are stored in the directory
To execute a
script, again right-click on the “Run Script File”
panel and this time select Execute this script from the
drop-down menu. After this, you can check if you have successfully
launched the desired program onto the client computer(s) by observing
the coloured icons beside each computer.
alternative to script files or in cases when you need to launch
programs on only a few computers, it may be useful to manually insert a
single command. This can be done by entering a command line into the
panel under “Send Single Commands”. An explanation of the command line
is shown below. Remember that you can always load previously used
commands by clicking on the drop-down menu button (denoted by an arrow
pointing downwards) on the right hand side of the “Send Single
You can use the Example
Room panel to select the
rows of computers) on which you wish to launch a program.
Alternatively, if you already know the number of the computer in the
network, you can also enter it into the command line as shown above.
to see which processes are currently running
running on a particular client computer by selecting that machine in
the Example Room
using the right mouse button. Select List running processes from
the drop-down menu.
to kill processes that are running
To kill a
select the process in the “Recent Commands” panel by clicking
with the left mouse button. Click on the Kill Selected button
at the bottom of the Control Panel.
on a particular computer, you can right-click on the particular
computer running the process in the Example Room and select Kill
all running processes.
computers, select the Kill All button located at the bottom of
the Control Panel.
the "Copy File" Function
The "Copy File" function
allows users to copy files from
the Room controller or Server computer to any of the
Transfer the file you wish to copy to the rmfiles directory,
which is located within the RemoteLauncherWorkingDirectory.
Then, enter the following command into the Control Panel in the
panel under “Send Single Commands” as shown below.