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Binary Installation (using conda)
Binary Installation
Binary Installation

These installation instructions are very similar to those on the page, but note that we point to a different conda channel. 

1) Install the Anaconda Scientific Python Distribution (or the stripped-down Miniconda, for a quicker install).  


Code Block
conda update conda

2) Add the LSST simulations software channel (note that this is DIFFERENT than the standard 'DM stack' channel! This is because of versioning issues between DM and Sims and is related to simulations having a more frequent release schedule. You can also get an older version of sims from the 'stack' channel). 

Current version of simulations from the sims conda channel is: sims_2.2.6, built against DM lsst_apps v12.0. The version of sims available on the stack channel is v12.0 (equivalent to sims_2.2.5), built against DM lsst_apps v12.0. 

Code Block
conda config --add channels

3) Install the desired sims and apps packages

Code Block
conda install lsst-apps
conda install lsst-sims

or just a single package .. (e.g. for just MAF)

Code Block
conda install lsst-sims-maf

for just MAF 

Then, every time you open a new shell, you can setup the sims packages using the following code. Note that the file `` is in `$ROOT/bin` where `$ROOT` is the conda environment that you installed into or if you did not specifically setup an environment (following the above method) it points to the conda installation. However, the location of the file does not matter, as the `ROOT/bin` directory should be in your path if you are using conda, and then you can launch the following commands from any working directory.


The recommended (simplest) approach is to use the newest W14 LSST software stack, and use the LSST-provided version miniconda python. (See here if you want to use your own python). 


In these instructions we assume you are installing in ~/lsst, however the install directory can be any place in the file system, including a place visible to all users.  To install in another location, replace ~/lsst with the desired path in the following instructions.  For multi user stacks, permissions are typically restricted to read only for the main stack so packages are not accidentally installed in the main stack.

For the basic install of lsst_apps, please follow the directions here: up to step 4 (stop after step 3), unless you want to install lsst_apps as well  and then from there, install lsst_sims following the directions below.

 2. Set up the environment and install the simulations code and data.


Code Block
setup sims_maf -t sims$USER -t $USERsims

will setup sims_maf and all of its dependencies, preferring versions tagged as 'sims,' using versions tagged as '$USER' if no 'sims' version exists, and only using 'current' if neither 'sims' nor '$USER' can be foundand then using versions matching the tags (resolved from left to right).  This system of eups tags allows you to have multiple versions of the stack built on your system simultaneously.  You will only ever be using the one that eups has setup.  To see which versions of a package exist on your system (and which has been setup) use

Code Block
eups list -v your_package_name



Code Block
eups list -s

Known issues: 

  • If you have issues with installation, first check that your system meets the minimum requirements listed here: LSST software user guide prerequisites., including having git-lfs set up.
  • Check for other known issues here: 
  • You can also search for similar problems on 
  • If you are having issues specifically with pyephem or healpy on a Mac, check for the existence of a /Developer directory. This directory is obsolete after upgrading to newer versions of XCode, but not removed by the XCode installer. Rename the /Developer directory and pyephem will install. 
  • If you are using your own python, be sure to check the Using Your Own Python page. If you are using your own anaconda python, be sure it In particular, on Linux, some lsst_apps packages will currently fail to build if the "nomkl" package is not installed in / anaconda (install somewhere like your home directory instead).  This should be fixed in a new release soon.
  • On a Mac, make sure you have accepted the terms on XCode.  You can do this by opening the (should be in your Applications folder).
  • git can fail, complaining about not having an https helper.  If your native git version is > 1.7, you can probably use that rather than the LSST installed git.
  • If all else fails, it's usually an issue with some environment variables interfering with the installation.  You can create a new user  and install the stack there.  You can quickly login/out of a new user account as follows:  First make a new admin-level user in System Preferences->Users and Groups, and then click on your name in the top right hand corner of the screen. A drop-down menu should appear, offering you a choice of other users to log in as. You might have to toggle the check box in System Preferences->Users and Groups->Login Options first though.