Understanding User Roles

Applies To: Windows HPC Server 2008

There are two types of HPC cluster user roles:

  • Administrator. HPC cluster administrators have permissions to manage all aspects of Windows HPC Server 2008 including configuring the HPC cluster network, deploying and managing nodes, and configuring the HPC Job Scheduler Service. Cluster administrators may also submit and manage jobs, tasks, and job templates that are created in or submitted to the cluster by other users.

  • User. HPC cluster users have permissions to manage tasks and jobs that they have submitted to the cluster. When a job that was submitted by an HPC cluster user fails, the user is able to diagnose, repair, and resubmit that job. Although HPC cluster users can see the jobs that have been submitted by others users, they cannot cancel those jobs or resubmit them. Also, HPC cluster users cannot view the job details and tasks for jobs that they did not submit themselves.

Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) is a prerequisite to running Windows HPC Server 2008 because the authentication process for users and computers relies on the services provided by AD DS. Before installation of Windows HPC Server 2008, when the computer that will serve as the head node is added to an Active Directory domain, the Domain Admins group is added to the local Administrators group, and the Domain Users group is added to the local Users group.

At installation time, Windows HPC Server 2008 uses the local settings for users and groups on the head node to assign administrator and user rights on the cluster. All members of the local Administrators group (including Domain Admins) are added as HPC cluster administrators, and all members of the local Users group (including Domain Users) are added as HPC cluster users.


If you do not want all users in the domain to have access to your cluster, you can remove the Domain Users group from the list of HPC cluster users, and add a different domain group specifically created for users of your HPC cluster, or you can add individual domain users.

You can manually add HPC cluster users or HPC cluster administrators in HPC Cluster Manager, if they are not already members of the Domain Users group or the Domain Admins group, respectively.

HPC cluster administrators are automatically propagated to all nodes on the cluster as members of the local Administrators group of each node. In the same way, HPC cluster users are propagated as members of the local Users group on each node. Users must have local logon permissions on the compute nodes in order to run jobs.

Additional references