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Downloading DATAPLOT for Unix Hosts

Contact Information September 2016.

Alan Heckert
Statistical Engineering Division
National Institute Of Standards and Technology
Gaithersburg, Md. 20899-8980
(301) 975-2899 or FTS 879-2899
alan.heckert@nist.gov
Jim Filliben
Statistical Engineering Division
National Institute Of Standards and Technology
Gaithersburg, Md. 20899-8980
(301) 975-2855 or FTS 879-2855
james.filliben@nist.gov

Introduction Dataplot is a command driven program. You can optionally run Dataplot using a graphical user interface (GUI) that is implemented using the Tcl/Tk scripting language. Reference will be made below to the "command line" version and the "GUI" version.

Due to the large number of Linux/Unix installations (and the various versions of these operating systems), we no longer provide pre-built executables. However, Dataplot should be straightforward to build on the various Linux/Unix platforms. I routinely build Dataplot using the Cent OS, Fedora, and Cygwin operating systems. I plan to add Ubuntu, and possibly Free BSD, to this list.

You do need to have the gfortran and gcc compilers installed in order to build Dataplot from the source files.

The download involves the following components:

  1. Dataplot auxillary files - These are auxillary files (e.g., on-line help files) used by Dataplot. Note that the command line version of Dataplot will run without them, although certain features will not be available. The auxillary files consist of the following parts:

    • The auxillary files common to both the command line and GUI versions. This includes on-line help files, sample data files, sample program files, and so on.

    • The Tcl/Tk script files.

    • The menu files for the GUI version (these are ASCII text files that determine the contents of the menus in the Dataplot GUI).

  2. Dataplot source and build files - These files contain the Dataplot source code. In addition, script files are available for building Dataplot on various platforms.

    You do not need to download the source if you can run one of the pre-built executables. However, if you need an executable for an unsupported system, or you are running an incompatible version of the operating system for a supported platform, or if you want to make your own source modifications, then you will need to build Dataplot from the source code.

Problems with Downloading If you have problems with the download, contact alan.heckert@nist.gov for assistance.
Post Downloading Instructions
Location for Executable and Auxillary Files The source page contains instructions for building Dataplot. Once you have built the Dataplot executable, you can move it to any convenient location. Typically, you would move it to "/usr/local/bin". If you do not have super user permissions, a common choice is to move it to "~/bin" where "~/" is your home directory. However, you are not restricted to these locations. For sake of discussion below, we assume the executable file is in /usr/local/bin (just replace /usr/local/bin with the appropriate location for your system).

The auxillary files page gives instructions for downloading and unpacking the Dataplot auxillary files. Typically, you would move these files to "/usr/local/lib/dataplot" or "~/lib/dataplot" if you do not have super user permissions. However, you are not restricted to these locations. For sake of discussion below, we assume the these files are in /usr/local/lib/dataplot (just replace
/usr/local/lib/dataplot with the appropriate location for your system).

Tcl/Tk is likely to be installed on most Unix/Linux systems. However, if it is not and you would like to use the GUI version, you need to download and install it. Since most variants of Linux will have some type of package management installation for Tcl/Tk, we will not discuss this further here. If you need assistance with this, contact alan.heckert@nist.gov.

Environment Variable for Dataplot Auxillary Files The default location for the Dataplot auxillary files is /usr/local/lib/dataplot. If you installed these files in a different directory, add the following line to your .cshrc file if you are using the c-shell or t-shell

setenv DATAPLOT_FILES <directory_name>

with <directory_name> denoting the name of the directory where the auxillary files are located. For example,

setenv DATAPLOT_FILES /home/heckert/lib/dataplot/

For the Bourne shell, add the following line to your .bashrc file

    DATAPLOT_FILES=<directory_name> export DATAPLOT_FILES

This step is not needed if you use
/usr/local/lib/dataplot.

The /usr/local/lib/dataplot directory will contain a number of sub-directories. The "frmenus" and "frscript" sub-directories are used by GUI version only. The remaining files and sub-directories are common to both the command line version and the GUI version.

Testing Dataplot Installation: Command Line Version You can test the installation of the command line version of Dataplot by entering the following commands.
    cd ~/
    dataplot
    device 1 x11
    call minitest.dp
    exit
Even if you only intend to use the GUI version, I recommend testing the command line version first since the GUI version is in fact running the command line version.

Be sure that the directory containing the Dataplot executable is in your path. For example, if you have the executable in /home/heckert/bin, you can add the following line to your .cshrc file (if you use the c-shell)

    set path=(/home/heckert/bin $path)
For the Bourne shell, the comparable line for the .bashrc file is
    PATH=/Users/heckert/bin:$PATH; export PATH
Testing the Dataplot GUI When you unpacked the Dataplot auxillary files, the following two directories should have been created:
  • /usr/local/lib/dataplot/frmenus

    This directory contains the Tcl/Tk scripts used by the Dataplot GUI.

  • /usr/local/lib/dataplot/frmenus

    This directory contains the ASCII files that define the contents of the menus in the Dataplot GUI.

If you unpacked these files into a different directory, then make the appropriate modification to the directory names above. The important point is that you should have the "frmenus" and the "frscript" sub-directories.

It is assumed that Tcl/Tk is already installed on your system. Typically, Tcl/Tk will be installed in either /usr/bin or /usr/local/bin. If you are not sure where it is installed, you can enter the command

    which wish

Dataplot uses the following environment variables to identify the location of the Dataplot menu files and script files respectively:

    setenv XDP_FILE /usr/local/lib/dataplot/frmenu
    setenv XDP_CODE /usr/local/lib/dataplot/frsript
If you did not install these in /usr/local/lib, you will need to edit the xdataplot file (see below) to reflect the correct locations.

Tcl/Tk requires the following environment variables to be set:

    setenv TCL_LIBRARY <pathname>/lib/tcl
    setenv TK_LIBRARY <pathname>/lib/tk
where <pathname> is typically /usr/local or /usr. Check with your local system administrator if you are not sure where they reside on your system.

For convenience, the script file xdataplot (this should be copied to the same directory as the Dataplot executable file) is provided. This script defines the above environment variables and then calls /usr/local/lib/dataplot/frscript/xdp (which is the main script for the Dataplot GUI).

You should manually edit the xdataplot file to make sure that the enviornment variables are set correctly for your system. The following is a typical setup for this file:

    #!/bin/csh -f
    #
    #  Script to run DATAPLOT graphical user interface.
    #
    #  This script should be modified to indicate the location
    #  of certain executables, libraries, directories on your
    #  local system.
    #
    #  The following 2 environment variables should specify
    #  where the Tcl/Tk version 8 libraries reside on your
    #  system.
    setenv TCL_LIBRARY  /usr/local/lib/tcl8.3
    setenv TK_LIBRARY  /usr/local/lib/tk8.3
    #
    #  The following environment variable specifies where
    #  the menu files reside.
    setenv XDP_FILE  /usr/local/lib/dataplot/frmenus
    #
    #  The following environment variable specifies where
    #  the menu files reside.
    setenv XDP_CODE  /usr/local/lib/dataplot/frscript
    #
    #  Following line may be required for some Sun platforms
    #   unsetenv LD_LIBRARY_PATH
    #
    #  execute front-end script
    /usr/local/lib/dataplot/frscript/xdp  $argv
             
Set the environment variables in this file to match the location of the directories on your system.

The first line of the file /usr/local/lib/dataplot/frscript/xdp is something like

    #!/usr/local/bin/wish
If this is not the proper location for Tcl/Tk on your system, modify this line to match your local system.

In order to run the front-end, enter the following command:

    /usr/local/bin/xdataplot
If your path is set correctly, you can simply enter xdataplot.
xdpConfig File The fscript directory contains the file
    xdpConfig
This is an ASCII text file that allows you to set some configuration settings for the Dataplot GUI. You should examine the contents of this file and make any changes if appropriate. The comments (lines starting with "#") in the file explain what the settings are for.
Installation Problems If you have problems with the installation, contact Alan Heckert for assistance.

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Date created: 06/05/2001
Last updated: 09/30/2016

Please email comments on this WWW page to alan.heckert@nist.gov.