CASA User Testing Meeting Minutes - 2015-04-28, 09:00 Socorro / 11:00 Charlottesville

Post-meeting minutes notes will be appended in blue text.



Present: Mark R., Drew B., Crystal, Juergen, Amanda, Steve

Apologies: None


  • Socorro: AOC-280; IP: or AOC-317; IP:
  • Charlottesville: Room 331; IP:

Minutes (Main Points Only)


  • 4.4 feature freeze officially passed. Test/stable/monthly packages are being produced for RHEL5 and 6.
  • OS X test packages production ongoing (for 10.10 and 10.9) Pre-release branch created yesterday. Announcement to follow in a couple of days regarding switching testing to the new pre-release packages. Stop press: First OS X pre-release packages now available at:
  • 4.3.1 is the current public release version for both Linux (RHEL5 and 6) and OS X (10.8). 4.2.2 is still currently being used for pipelined ALMA data reduction at the NAASC, but 4.3 has now been adopted for "manual calibration" reductions.
    • The same general-purpose CASA launcher script has now been deployed at CV, SOC and GB. Details are on the appropriate drop-down menu of the public CASA pages at
      • For anyone using test machines zuul01, 03 and 04 are running RHEL6, zuul02 is running RHEL5. REMEMBER: Use /usr/bin/casa on these machines to make sure that you are running the new test/stable packages (there are RPM installations on these).
  • Latest stable package (Linux only): 4.4.143 (svn r33076)
  • Any user that needs to check if a specific Subversion revision number is included in a given package can consult the look-up table here.

Number of CASA Jira tickets with "Ready To Test"/"Under Test" status (including EA, EU, JAO, Software-only tickets, but excluding Pipeline) prior to meeting: 50 (was 60).

Number of CASA Jira tickets with "Ready To Test"/"Under Test" status (including EA, EU, JAO, Software-only tickets) following meeting: 48.


  • 4.4 feature freeze deadline (March 1st) has passed. No new features can be added to 4.4 from now on. 4.4 pre-release branch to be announced soon, user testing to be conducted on the 4.4 stable packages for now (Linux only for now, OS X still to come, but testing can be done using OS X test packages).
  • Crystal asked what the new "headline" features would be for the 4.4 release STILL TO BE ADDED
  • Latest word on the target release date from Jeff: second week of May.
  • New ticket assignments.
  • The "nag list", "input required" items
  • Major test coverage areas for 4.4 pre-release testing
    • Reworked statistics framework - check for changes in behavior. Peter Teuben (plus?) See CAS-7034 Mark R. to hassle Peter about the testing of this. Since he led the group that requested this, they should probably also set requirements criteria for associated regression testing as well.
    • PlotMS - Designated tester: Drew Brisbin
      • New PlotMS code implementing VI/VB2 and on-the-fly calibration. Related tickets (with revision 32835+) are: CAS-3034, CAS-4864, CAS-7117, CAS-7118, CAS-7119, (CAS-7386 and CAS-7393) (see below)
      • Besides testing the new functionality, including on-the-fly calibration and plotting sigma and sigma spectrum, please put PlotMS through its paces and make sure none of the old functionality was broken as a result of the underlying code change.
      • Check averaging and flagging. The Pipeline group will also be looking for any such issues.
      • Remaining related issues for release 4.4 include the creation of virtual model data when there is no MODEL_DATA column or SOURCE_MODEL column (CAS-7390), and improving the performance of the VI/VB2 iteration through the data when averaging (CAS-7412).
      • Also, regarding testing the OTF calibration: A callib parameter has been added to the plotms task in order to use this feature, e.g. plotms("", callib="callib.txt", ydatacolumn="corrected") where callib can be a filename or a python dictionary. PlotMS now has a Calibration tab where the OTF calibration can be enabled/disabled, but callib can only be set through the casapy interface for this release.
      • Any other issues should be reported.
    • Viewer: Amanda to do ordinary routine use testing of this during this week.
    • Weight column (including weight column -> initialized weight spectrum). See CAS-4469. Testers to work with George. Steve will look into this.
    • New ATM library in 4.4 (CAS-7220). Should be (more or less) a drop-in replacement: testers just need to watch for any oddities during routine use.
    • For a limited group: HPC work (e.g. number of open files, etc.). Pipeline group are also involved in testing this. Probably does not need a lot of dedicated science user testing yet, beyond routinely trying to use split2, day-to-day MSTransform-type work, etc. Amanda K. to test routine split2, cvel2 and other MS_Transform-related issues (she should probably be added to open testing tickets on this). Mark R. to discuss this with Amanda after the meeting.
  • The next meeting is scheduled to take place on May 5th.
  • Any Other Business:
    • Crystal reported that she had run into severe performance problems with the VIewer under 4.3.1 on her desktop machine: she only had two normal, normal-sized cubes open, but found the Viewer was taking several minutes to redisplay. In addition, the CPU usage was extremely high. It is not clear if this behavior has been seen to be a problem elsewhere yet. The problem does not appear to be present in the current 4.4 stable packages, but should be watched for in the 4.4 pre-release packages.

Old Action Items

  • None

New Action Items Arising

  • Mark R. to chase up new statistics framework testing.
  • Mark R. and Amanda to discuss MSTransform testing after the meeting.

PART 1: Items to be Covered During Meetings (as time permits)

Propose to Close Items

  • CAS-7408 immoments crashes with underscores in mask names. Tester: Juergen. Effectively just a matter of syntax? Juergen will do a quick final check back and resolve this.

Items Overdue for Status Updates (i.e. the "Nag List")

  • CAS-7318 (Feb): 4.4 item. Verify unpolarized calibrator mode for linear basis (ALMA). Under Test. Tester: Steve. Ticket pinged. Steve and George to nag each other about this one. Ticket pinged.
  • CAS-4469 (Jun+ 2013): Split with channel averaging is creating spurious spectral features and weight is wrong when there has been channel flagging. Subtask of CAS-5245. Critical item. "Under Test". Tester: Crystal. Ticket pinged.
  • CAS-3580 (Aug): 4.4 item. Prediction of expected image based noise based on Tsys. Under Test in 4.3. Tester: Eric V. (to be tested at the JAO). Kept open at Remy's express request. Recent testing continuing by Eric. Tracked elsewhere(?)
  • CAS-4758 (Sep): 4.4 item. fluxscale fails if one of the reference fields is flagged. Under Test (r31121+) in current (new-style) stable. Tester: Claire. No testing progress on this since October. Claire had been trying to find a suitable dataset for testing. Steve thought that this should actually be fairly easy to testand that Claire and/or he may have been able to test this one. Ticket pinged. User tester now says that she won't have time to test this. Reassign? Discussed during the meeting. The suggestion was to ask Drew M. about this, and (if appropriate) reassign it to Brian Kent.
  • CAS-6912: 4.4 item now. makemask copy always replaces image. 4.3 item. "Under Test" again in stable package 4.4.9+. Tester: Juergen. Just needs a minor documentation update and it's done.
  • CAS-4623 (Aug): 4.4 item now. SetJy: Method to set Pol Fraction and Angle as Function of Frequency. Under Test in current packages. Tester: Preshanth. Had been pending access to new testable package. Steve now has a test dataset for this. Ticket passed to Preshanth, although Steve will probably also do a bit of testing of this one. Preshanth has tested this, and promised to file his report weeks ago. Preshanth has been in Canada recently, hence the lack of a response. Steve's had a bit of a look at this, and thinks that it already sort of works. A test script is probably needed, though. Preshanth's back in the country now, and aware of the need to finish up this ticket soon. Can't be resolved until fix for CAS-7434 (see next) has been OKed first.
  • CAS-7434 setjy RL phase error. Under Test now. Provisionally assigned to Steve (but maybe Preshanth can test?) Juergen to add a note to the 4.3 documentation about this. Tester: Steve
  • CAS-6707 (Sep): mstransform problems with CALDEVICE and SYSPOWER sub-tables when creating an MMS. Under Test in 4.3, but 4.4 item now. Tester: Previously passed to Steve for VLA user tester assignment. Previously discussed at length: Feature was already shipped in 4.3. To resolve or not to resolve (that is the question)? Steve had talked to James Robnett to get a sense of the status of parallelization. May be more of a developer/Pipeline testing item?
  • CAS-6527 CASA collides with easy_install.pth. 4.4 Blocker item. Under Test. Tester: Remy. Crash reported in ticket no longer happens (at the moment). The re-inclusion of PYTHONPATH may potentially break things again, though, and conclusive testing for this issue is dependent on the availability of an OS X package. Tester has been directed towards the recent OS X test packages (10.9 and 10.10).
  • CAS-6529: 4.4 item now. MS processed with mstransform not handled correctly by uvcontsub, clean, etc... Under Test in latest new-style stables and pre-releases. Tester: Juergen (was Kristina). Close to done. Ticket pinged.Juergen to look at this this week.
  • CAS-7034 (Mar 2015): Development of new Common Statistics Framework. Under Test now in current stable package. Tester: Peter Teuben. Ticket pinged.Mark R. to emphasize the urgency of this for the 4.4 release to the user testers.
  • CAS-7364 (Feb 2015): wvrgcal has problems with purely numerical field names. 4.4 item. Under Test. Tester: Thomas Stanke. Ticket pinged.
  • CAS-7207 (Mar 2015): Flux density not working for multiple beam one per channel image. Available in stable now. Under Test. Tester: Juergen. Ticket pinged. Juergen to check in the pre-release this week.
  • CAS-7109 (Mar 2015): Linear full mosaics. Available in stable now. Under Test. Tester: Steve. No progress yet.
  • CAS-6952 wvrgcal fails on a source at low elevation (11 deg), but PWV is only 3.5mm toward the target and there is no sign of ground spillover. 4.4 item. Currently Under Test. Tester: Todd. Ticket pinged.
  • CAS-4983 (Mar 2015): frequencies in gain tables derived using combine='spw' are incorrect. 4.4 item. Available in stable now. Under Test. Tester: Claire. Some duplication with CAS-7097 (assigned to Claire). Reassign? Reassigned to Crystal.
  • CAS-7204 ia.regrid no longer works on certain images in the new release. Under Test in current stable. Tester: Juergen (was Kristina). Ticket pinged. Juergen to check in the pre-release this week.
  • CAS-7424 improve leap second message. Under Test in stable. Tester: Juergen. Resolved following the meeting.

Other Items Currently "Under Test"

  • PlotMS Items Drew Brisbin is the science user tester assigned to work closely with Pam on this during the next couple of weeks or so..
    • CAS-3034 (Mar 2015): Ability to apply calibration on-the-fly. PlotMS testing item. Currently RTT. Available in current stable package. Tester: Drew B.
    • CAS-7118 (Mar 2015): Plot sigma, sigma spectrum. PlotMS testing item. Currently RTT. Available in current stable package. Tester: Drew B.
    • CAS-7119 (Mar 2015): Add ability to plot averaged weights. PlotMS testing item. Currently RTT. Available in current stable package. Tester: Drew B.
  • CAS-6882 (Mar 2015): imstat sums over multiple planes in an image cube to produce a "flux". RTT, available in current stable. 4.4 item. Ongoing. Tester: Catarina.
  • CAS-7268 (Mar 2015): importuvfits creates inconsistent MS. Under Test. Tester: Nate
  • CAS-7314 (Mar 2015): Add capability to average across fields. Officially Under Test already, but needs the VI/VB2 version of PlotMS to test, so this would be an advance assignment. Question raised during previous meeting: What is the intended science use case for this? Answer: Different observations of the same field source might carry different field IDs. May also have mosaicking applications. Tester: Steve
  • CAS-7240 (Jan): 4.4 item. Dot option for grid lines in plotms does not work on Mac. Under Test using a recent OS X test/stable 4.4 package. Tester: Paul F.
  • CAS-7247 (Jan): 4.4 item. peak value in spectral profile Gaussian estimates window overlapping with slider on Mac. Under Test now with a recent OS X test/stable 4.4 package. Tester: DA
  • CAS-7479: Streamline SubImageFactory::createImage(). RTT. Available in the current stable package now. Tester: Catarina

"Ready To Test" Items Pending Tester Assignment

  • CAS-4283: implement ia.continuumsub()/imcontsub using ImageProfileFitter. RTT. Available in the current stable package now. Tester: TBD (DA?) To go to a DA, at least initially.
  • CAS-7473: Fix raw pointer issue in LatticeApply and StatsTiledCollapser. RTT. Available in the current stable package now. Tester: TBD (DA?) To go to a DA, at least initially.

Single Dish (to be skipped during the meeting)

  • See SD ticket list below

Input Required

  • CAS-5334 (Feb 2014): Ellipse regions have wrong width (RA). Second fix committed. Was previously tested in casapy-test (r29326), set to Input Required for input from developer. Tester: Paul. Just pushed back to 4.5. Cropped up in a Helpdesk ticket recently, so still a problem. Bouncing between developers at the moment.
  • CAS-5806 Mathematical prediction of post-gridding single dish beam. Formerly a 4.3+ Blocker, now "Critical". "Input Required?* Developer has done some modelling, but... ? This is a "blocker of a different kind..." High priority (blocking further development). Currently Input Required from Kana. Crystal and Kumar had been in discussion, but this ticket has been quiet since (effectively) December. Post-4.4 item now.
  • CAS-6975: not evidently possible to overplot from casapy. Input Required from Remy. Ticket pinged previously. Post-4.4 item now.
  • CAS-7282 (Feb 2015): add Gauribidanur Radio Heliograph to CASA. New item, low priority, post-4.4. Ticket with developer, but more input needed from user first.
  • CAS-4735 (Nov): imsmooth needs additional option for single dish use. Subtask of CAS-5844 (above). Open again. Tester: Tsuyoshi. Critical item. Code committed to trunk. 4.3 item. Some testing done, mostly works as intended. Input Required from Crystal for some remaining changes. Any remaining future work will have to be for post-4.4.
  • CAS-6124: imfit subtasks:
    • CAS-4538: migrate imfit input estimates from file to input parameters. Input Required (was "On Hold"). Subtask of CAS-6124. Ticket passed to Juergen, pending a CSSC discussion of what needs to be done and a scheduling of the work. Pushed back to 4.5. Ticket pinged. Juergen: More thought about imfit still needed by Science.
    • CAS-6234: imfit estimates should allow sky coordinates in addition to pixel values. Input Required (was "On Hold"). Subtask of CAS-6124. Ticket with Juergen, pending a CSSC discussion of what needs to be done and a scheduling of the work. Pushed back to 4.5. Ticket pinged.Juergen: More thought about imfit still needed by Science.
  • CAS-4748 (Dec 2012): Polarization selection does not select SIGMA. Input Required. Passed to Jeff for prioritization. Sanjay thinks it's a low-priority item. Version 4.5+.
  • CAS-5886 (Dec 2013): bizarre clean boxes for large images. Awaiting input from one developer to another. Version 4.5+.
  • CAS-6175 Plotms-vis-model (minus) normalization (visnorm) in gain,bandpass (seems to be missing now). Ticket with Jeff for follow-up. Pushed back to 4.5. Ticket pinged.
  • CAS-2825 Support for Lissajous mapping. Pushed back to 4.5+. Input from Tsuyoshi requested. Discussion ongoing.
  • CAS-5162 (Sep 2013): Improvements in flagging documentation and examples. Input Required from Science (via Jeff). This ticket has been left untouched since May 2013... Version 4.5+.
  • CAS-6794 clean is very slow handling this simple, small ACA mosaic. Input Required from Juergen.

Other Blockers

  • CAS-7488 Cube error when trying to plot averaged float data. New item. Currently Scheduled. Currently being worked on. Weight-spectrum related.
  • CAS-7460 plotms frequencies wrong when chan. averaging. Subtask of CAS-4864. New item. Fix already committed. Currently Under Test by developer.
  • CAS-7491 plotms frequencies wrong when time avg interval is entire scan. Subtask of CAS-4864. New item. Currently Open.
  • CAS-7251 sdimaging crashed on 4.3 prerelease for OS X 10.10 (was 10.8). 4.4 item(?). Open. Currently with Kana. Takeshi had been looking into this. Crash reproduced at NAOJ, but not yet in CV. Recently reproduced in OS X 10.10 package. May need additional investigation.
    • CAS-6688 Turn on new vi/vb within imager and test. 4.4 item, but Unscheduled. Currently with Jim. Some scope modification suggested for this ticket.

  • Viewer registration tickets:
    • CAS-6560 contour image does not unzoom when master coordinate image is re-registered. Subtask of CAS-6604. Viewer issue. Currently Unscheduled.
    • CAS-6720 2 panels don't register. Viewer issue. Currently Open.

PART 2: Items Listed for Informational Purposes (note that these will not normally be specifically discussed during the meeting unless someone raises them)

Unable to Test Items

  • CAS-3614 Calibration and Analysis of Single Dish Polarization. Pushed back to 4.5+. Input from Tsuyoshi requested: Response was that cal/analysis strategy for SD pol not yet established, so no input possible yet. Leaving as "Input Required" until then.
  • CAS-6433 (Apr): Implement a function to derive Jy/K factor from amplitude calibrator observation. Scheduled. Currently with developer. Was targeted for November 23rd Pipeline release. Pushed back to the March(+) 2015 Pipeline release and flagged as a Pipeline Blocker.
  • CAS-6232 (Mar): writing version numbers in GUIs. Under Test in 4.3. Most recent commit to trunk was r29373. Tester: Juergen. However, this also needs to be checked in the table browser, the work on which is currently unscheduled. Spawned another ticket CAS-7033) for its underlying cause. Also recently spawned CAS-7439.
  • CAS-5379 - Subtle inconsistencies with other programs in Galactic Coordinates (Adam and Harvey). In a nutshell, shifts of ~0.2" are seen when taking data into other packages (e.g. DS9, IDL which both seem to agree with each other). It is unclear yet if this is an incorrect implementation in one or more packages, or possibly just a precision error. This is a subtle issue, and was pushed back. Ticket stalled. Needs to be looked at by someone with lots of time. To be left as-is for now. This needs significant work, including new science papers on how to actually define the Galactic coordinate system? Needs casacore discussion; this can be part of that. Passed to Jeff for now. Pushed back to some indefinite future release.
  • CAS-4636 (Oct 2012): Elevation dependent opacity application w/ Tsys. Still awaiting input from Science. Had been "On Hold" since August, awaiting data. Switched to Input Required and passed to Crystal for comment. Bumped back to 4.4+. Work on this is "Unscheduled" until further notice (more than a year, now). * CAS-6243: sdimaging does not accept type numpy.string_ for fieldid. Unscheduled, pending identification of a suitable example case. Commit was r29988. Discussion ongoing. Pushed back to 4.4(+). Tester: Todd. Todd hasn't seen this happening, but hasn't specifically tested for it either. Ticket pinged.

Upcoming Ready to (Re)Test Items

Not Yet Assigned To Testers

  • TBA

Single Dish

See below "assigned" SD list.

Already Assigned To Testers

  • CAS-4592: plotms on 10.7 issues. Previously half fixed due to Qt updates. Was "ARTT" in 4.2.1 and 4.2.2 pre-release. Was "Under Test" , shoewn to till be an issue under 10.10. Tester: Nathan.
  • CAS-5689 (Mar 2015): spectral fitting results seem off. Viewer item. Previously "Under Test". Some testing done recently, problem case still found. Bouncing between developers at the moment. Tester: Dirk P.
  • CAS-6951 (Oct): 4.4 item now. mstransform creates a 4-polarization DATA column for single-polarization ALMA WVR data, and a 1-polarization DATA column for four-polarization ALMA data. Fix already included in current new-style test/stable packages newer than 4.2.23. Scheduled again now. Tester: Todd. Ticket currently back with developer(s) again.
  • CAS-3532 (Sep): Incorporation of Alma Primary Beam in Mosaic. Was ARTT, currently Scheduled. Tester was Scott S., but ticket passed to Crystal for input. Some test imaging done. Ticket with developer. Pushed back to 4.5.
  • CAS-3517 (Aug): Improve remapping interface (Cal libraries). Input Required from developer. Tester: Steve. Some testing done, recommendations made, ticket back with developer. Discussion ongoing. Further callibrary work to be pushed out to 4.4 in Jira. Previously identified as a duplicate of CAS-5617, but now (also) a sub-task of it. Ticket pinged.
  • CAS-5893 (May): Now a 4.5 item. Add the ability to write a spectral profile to an ASCII file in the ia tool. Was Under Test in 4.3. Commit was r29681. Tester: Assigned to Juergen for testing and a possible CSSC discussion. Might also need a task adding for this, but this will be 4.5 work. Recent testing done, passed back to developer for 4.5 work.
  • CAS-5127 (May): Document ia toolkit methods. Status Scheduled. Mark is working on this. Most of Juergen's prioritized list of 26 items has been done. Dates to be added his future documentation updates. Prioritized by Mark. Ongoing. ia.regrid docs will require more work. Still needs code commits. Mark to restart work on this under Linux soon.

Single Dish

  • CAS-7003: MS transition: accept per spectrum baseline parameter. SD item. Subtask of CAS-6988. Under Test in current stable now. Tester: Patricio. Mostly done - just a couple of questions to follow up on (but can probably then be resolved).

  • CAS-6999 (Mar): MS transition: enable blfunc='cspline' in the new baseline task for MS. Subtask of CAS-6988. Under Test. Tester: Junko.
  • CAS-6572: (Aug): A new baseline task that handles baseline table. Under Test in latest 4.3 casapy-test/new-style stable packages. Mostly done. Ticket with Kana. Ticket pinged.

-- MarkRawlings - 2015-04-24
Topic revision: r7 - 2015-04-29, MarkRawlings
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