Electronic Submission Guidelines - CSCI 551, Spring 2010, MW Section

This page contains information about electronic submission for project and homework assignments. Starting this semester, we will be using a new submission software called bsubmit. It behaves very differently from the old submit program that you are used to. Please read more about bsubmit below.

Check the server time at the submission server.

Platform for Projects
You should use your USC accounts and preferably work on the Solaris machines in the ISD computer rooms for testing. The final (submitted) program must run on because we are going to test it in that environment. But you should not do there the whole program development, as nunki is a general purpose server - under heavyuse from many students.
Languages for Projects
You can use either C or C++ for your project. Files must be named as follows ...
LanguageTypeAllowed Extensions
C or C++Headers.h
Compilation for Projects
You must have a Makefile for your program even in the case of single file submission. Please read the information on Makefile very carefully because it may have great affect your project scores. So, make sure you verify your submission before you submit!
README File for Projects
You must include a README file to comment on anything pertinent to someone trying to run/grade your project. Please read the requirements about the README file. If you have nothing to say in your README file, please state that the file is left blank intentionally.
On Time Submission
Due to clock skews, electronic submissions of projects and homeworks assignments will be accepted within 15 minutes after the specified deadlines without penalties. If you submit with the next 24 hours, you will receive 75% of your grade. Although in the first 50 minutes of this period, you will only lose 1% of your grade every 2 minutes. You will receive a score of zero after the first 24 hours (and your assignment will not be graded).
When you are ready to submit it for grading, you must:
  1. Create a gzip compressed .tar file containing all the source files needed to compile your project. Do not add .o files, executables, or core files to the .tar file. Please note that including .o files, executables, or core files will result in an automatic deduction of 10% of the points allocated to the corresponding project. For example, if your project (with Makefile, README, some .c and some .h files) resides in a directory named warmup1 in your home directory, this must be done by (if your source code filename extensions are not .c and .h, you should replace .c and .h by what you want to submit):
        % cd ~/warmup1
        % tar cvf warmup1.tar Makefile README *.c *.h
        % gzip warmup1.tar

    Please note that what follows tar cvf above is a single dash character. It means that the generated tar file should go to stdout. If it is omitted, the generated tar file will replace Makefile and warmup1.tar will be a list of files in the above example.

    If for some reason you cannot run the commands above and decide to use another method, you must inform the TA and the instructor through e-mail as soon as you submit your assignment. Also, you will be doing this at your own risk!

    If you submit through e-mail, please note that it can take a lot of time for the e-mail to get delivered to the instructor's mailbox. Depending on your e-mail client and your service provider, an e-mail can take anywhere from seconds to hours before it is delivered. Unless you know your e-mail server well, it's probably a good idea to submit early this way. Also, since the header of e-mail messages can be spoofed easily, the only timestamp the instructor can use (in order to be fair to all) in an e-mail submission is the time the e-mail arrived into the instructor's mailbox.

    For homework assignments, the only acceptable formats are ASCII text, PDF, Postscript, and HTML. All other formats will receive a score of zero. If you are planning to submit PDF, Postscript, or HTML files, please make sure in advance that your machine is capable of generating files in the format you want and that you are familiar with the procedure.

    It is recommended that you extract the .tar.gz file you created to a temporary directory somewhere else, and try compiling and running your code there. This will provide some assurance that your project submission will work at grading time. Please see the verify your submission section below.

  2. Submit the .tar.gz file you created, use the bsubmit executable in the ~csci551b/bin directory on (or any Solaris machine which you can find ~csci551b/bin/bsubmit). The syntax is:
        ~csci551b/bin/bsubmit config -set email=you@yourdomain
        ~csci551b/bin/bsubmit upload -event event_id -file submission_file
    Please note that this bsubmit submission software is new and behaves very differently from the old submit program you are used to.

    The first line above is to configure the submission software for the e-mail address where you will receive notifications from the sever.

    The event_id for each assignment is different:

    Assignment event_id
    Warm-up Project #1 merlot.usc.edu_80_1217617760_51
    Warm-up Project #2 merlot.usc.edu_80_1217617760_52
    Final Part (1) merlot.usc.edu_80_1217617760_53
    Final Part (2) merlot.usc.edu_80_1217617760_54

    Therefore, you should submit the projects by doing:

        % ~csci551b/bin/bsubmit upload \
              -event merlot.usc.edu_80_1217617760_51 \
              -file warmup1.tar.gz
        % ~csci551b/bin/bsubmit upload \
              -event merlot.usc.edu_80_1217617760_52 \
              -file warmup2.tar.gz
        % ~csci551b/bin/bsubmit upload \
              -event merlot.usc.edu_80_1217617760_53 \
              -file final1.tar.gz
        % ~csci551b/bin/bsubmit upload \
              -event merlot.usc.edu_80_1217617760_54 \
              -file final2.tar.gz

  3. Check the output of the bsubmit program carefully. It should tell you:

    • where a copy of your submission is stored,
    • where the upload ticket is stored,
    • where the receipt is stored,
    • and at what time did the server received your submission.

    By default, these files are stored in:

    where $evid is the event_id for the corresponding event.
Please also check the output and make sure that you have submitted to the correct event.

The bsubmit program can be used multiple times for a given assignment. A later (on time) submission is considered to supersede previous submissions. If you would like us to grade an earlier submission instead of the last on time submission, you need to send e-mail to the grader, the TA, and the instructor within 12 hours after deadline.

Verify Your Submission
After you submitted warmup1.tar.gz, you should verify what you've submitted can be compiled as is. Let's say your warmup1.tar.gz is in your ~/warmup1 directory. Do the following on
    % cd ~/warmup1
    % mkdir xyzzy
    % cd xyzzy
    % gunzip -c ../warmup1.tar.gz > warmup1.tar
    % tar xvf warmup1.tar
    % make
    % cd ..
    % rm -rf xyzzy
Before you run the mkdir command, make sure you don't have the xyzzy directory. If you do, delete it. A few things to note:
  1. If the gunzip command failed, the warmup1.tar.gz file your've submitted is not properly gzipped.
  2. If the tar command failed, the warmup1.tar.gz file your've submitted is not properly created.
  3. If the make command failed, you probably forgot to include something in your submission. Please remember that if this does not work, you may lose quite a few points.
  4. If any of the above failure occurs, you must recreate your submission and submit again and verify again.

[Last updated Sat Sep 19 2020]    [Please see copyright regarding copying.]