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Technical Notes

03 April 2009
All users: please upgrade to ds9 5.x at your earliest convenience. The latest version of ds9 contains important new features.

Installation Notes

On what platforms can I install the Chandra Data Analysis and Software System?

The key program needed to run the Chandra Data Analysis and Software System is the ds9 imaging system. Currently ds9 can be installed on systems running the following operating systems:

If the operating system that you run is not listed here - e.g. Windows 95, Mac OS 8 - most likely you will not be able to install ds9. If you have questions, contact the SAO R&D group at

With the exception of Mac OS X, these executables should run on your system without any additional software. We plan on developing a version of ds9 for Mac OS X that does not require X Windows.

We have provided a separate set of installation procedures for each type of operating system.

Your computer may be behind a firewall. Can you still use Chandra-Ed?

Yes, in most cases you should be able to start up ds9, connect it to chandra-ed (using the Virtual Observatory option), and then load images and run data analysis. The connection that ds9 makes to chandra-ed is used to pass image data and analysis results back to ds9. This scheme will work even if:
  1. your computer is behind a firewall that blocks incoming connections
  2. your computer is behind a firewall that uses Network Address Translation
  3. your computer is on a private network (192.168.x.y or 10.1.x.y)

Note that you will NOT be able to use ds9 and chandra-ed if your computer is not allowed to make a direct connection to an external IP address (in which case ds9 cannot connect to chandra-ed). This ability (called "direct IP-reachability") can be disabled by sites that instead require external IP access be made through a proxy server such as SOCKS. If you find that you cannot make a connection between ds9 and chandra-ed, please contact us at

Are there any other restrictions for utilizing Chandra-Ed?

In order for the Chandra-Ed Web site to work properly with ds9, you must be running the ds9 program on the same computer as your Web browser. We also recommend that you only run a single ds9/browser pair on a given computer. If either of these restrictions is a problem for you, please contact us at

Reporting other problems: Send reports of software bugs or any other problems to

Last updated: 04/03/09


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