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With the ever-evolving workplace and classroom, we know that the way we work and learn may be changing. To keep up with that change, we wanted to share some of the possibilities of accessing Cadence tools remotely. Before using any of the scenarios below, please check specific permissions related to your university with the Academic Network or your local distributor from which you receive access to Cadence tools and licenses. All requests that the Academic Network receives from customers of local distributors will be redirected to the distributors, as they might have different regulations dependent on the region and their Terms and Conditions. Contact information for local distributors is listed at the bottom of the blog.
Most of Cadence software for IC design is written for the Linux operating system. Linux has hundreds of different “flavors” called distributions; RHEL 7.0 and SLES 11.0 are the distributions that are compatible with the majority of Cadence software. For a full overview of supported distributions please check the compatibility table.
There are two different basic scenarios for accessing Cadence tools using Linux software:
In the first scenario, the license server with Cadence licenses is running at your university and you have Cadence tools installed on your private computer or a computer which has been provided to you by your university for use off-campus. Now create a secure VPN connection to your university network and set the following environment variables:
export CDS_LIC_FILE=5280@<IP of license server>
export LM_LICENSE_FILE=5280@<IP of license server>
It is very important to understand that the license server needs to be accessible only through a password protected firewall, like a VPN. Cadence reserves the right to monitor the server for public access and to cancel or interrupt the contract with the university if they are not following these guidelines.
One problem you might run into with this scenario is not having the right Linux distribution. In this circumstance, you would need to use a Virtual Machine environment, like HyperV, VMWare or VirtualBox, to then run the RHEL or SLES distribution. This solution requires some expertise to install, but once the virtual machine is running and has network access to the license server, installation of Cadence software can start. Academic distributors, like Europractice, are working on creating VM images, which contain Cadence software already configured for the end user, but they are currently in the beta testing phase.
These tools can be accessed using Windows or a Windows VM for Mac users. As long as the user is connected to the license server over a VPN connection, they can run the tools natively on their workstation.
In the second scenario, the license server and the workstation/server with the installed Cadence software are located at your university and you can access it via a secure VPN connection. If you require just terminal access (e.g. for running some Genus/Innovus/Tempus scripts and checking the logfiles), then ssh access to the workstation/server might be sufficient. If graphical access is required, it can either be done via XWindows protocol, (the more secure version would be X-Forwarding over ssh) or via screen-forwarding apps like VNC, NX, ExceedOnDemand or similar. Please discuss with your network administrator or IT department which software should be used and which ports have to be opened for VPN users.
Cloud is becoming very popular for delivering digital services, so you might be wondering if it is possible to install Cadence tools in the cloud. In general, it is possible, however it requires expert knowledge to create a secure environment inside the cloud, which can then access Cadence tools and design data. Please contact the Cadence Academic Network at email@example.com to get more information or look in to the Cloud Passport Partners Program.
Many of the members of the Academic Network are also a part of the OrCAD Academic Program, which is a separate distribution channel. The OrCAD Academic Program is available at the university level or to individual students. Cadence OrCAD tools are accessed using Microsoft Windows. For questions regarding this offering, please reach out to your regional channel partner. Learn more about accessing the tools as a student: Exciting Academic News on OrCAD.
If you have any doubts about how Cadence licenses and tools can be accessed remotely without violating Cadence Academic Network Terms and Conditions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or your local distributor. In order to understand which scenario is recommended by your university, you will have to coordinate with your network administrator or IT department. The Cadence Academic Network looks forward to supporting you in this ever-evolving world.
Contact for Europractice customers: MicroelectronicsCentre@stfc.ac.uk
Contact for CMC customers: CAD@cmc.ca
General Cadence Remote Access Terms and Conditions
Authorized universities that get remote access approval agree to additional terms that include but are not limited to ensuring that there are sufficient security measures in place to protect any Licensed Materials. Additionally, the Licensed Materials must be hosted on the Designated Equipment and only made accessible to a university facility or home office.