Using RStudio on the Quest Analytics Nodes


How to use RStudio on the Quest Analytics Nodes.


The Quest Analytics Nodes allow users with active Quest allocations to use RStudio from a web browser. See Research Computing: Quest Analytics Nodes for an overview of the system.

Note: you cannot submit jobs to the Quest job scheduling system using the Quest Analytics Nodes.


Users must already have a Quest account and an active Quest allocation.

Connections to the Quest Analytics Nodes are limited to the Northwestern network. If you are connecting from off-campus, you must use the Northwestern VPN.

Using any browser, connect to:

Sign in with your NetID and password.

Transferring and Accessing Files

All of the Quest file systems are accessible from the Quest Analytics Nodes. You can transfer files using the methods to transfer files to Quest more generally.

You can also transfer files smaller than 500MB using the Files tab in RStudio. There is an upload button that will allow you to select files from your computer to transfer.

When you connect to RStudio, you will initially be in your home directory. This is /home/<netid> on Quest.

To access a project directory, click on the button with three small dots on the right in the Files tab. Then enter the full path to your project folder (ex. /projects/<allocationID>).


To transfer files larger than 500MB to Quest, please use SFTP or another transfer method.

Installing Packages

Users may install packages using the Packages tab in RStudio Server version 2023.06 or the install.packages function in R. Some packages that require code to be compiled may need to be installed by connecting to a Quest login node and following the tips below. Please see Installing and Managing R Packages on Quest and  Troubleshooting Installing R Packages on Quest and Quest Analytics for more information.

System Details

RStudio Server is version 2023.06. R is version 4.2.3. The Analytics Nodes are limited to running a single version of R for all users.

The Quest Analytics Nodes are shared by many researchers. Please be aware of your memory use when analyzing large data sets. Users utilizing a large amount of memory, especially those using over 60GB of RAM, may be asked to move their analysis to other systems. Multicore and parallel processes should not be run on the Analytics nodes. Users needing to run computationally intensive jobs should schedule interactive or batch jobs on Quest instead of using the Analytics nodes. Please contact Research Computing at with questions about R memory use or analyzing large data sets.

Issues or Problems with the Analytics Nodes

To report issues or problems with the Analytics Nodes, please email with information on which service you were using (RStudio), the error you received or problem you encountered, and what you were doing prior to the problem occurring. Please note that you were using the Analytics Nodes.



Article ID: 1560
Thu 5/12/22 1:39 PM
Fri 6/14/24 11:27 AM