GUIAPPS - IRAF GUI Applications Package

GUIAPPS - IRAF GUI Applications Package

Updated: 08Nov2000

Some time ago we started a project to develop prototype IRAF applications with integral GUIs (graphical user interfaces). These applications have long since served their purpose in prototyping new technology for science GUIs and component-based applications in IRAF. The GUI prototypes are much more than just technology prototypes however: these are very useful science applications with many new features, with a nice graphical user interface to boot. With the release of IRAF V2.11.3 and X11IRAF V1.2 earlier this year (including the latest hooks needed to run IRAF GUI applications) it became possible to wrap up work on the GUI prototypes and get them out for people to use.

The prototype GUI applications are included in the package GUIAPPS. IRAF V2.11.3 or later and the X11IRAF V1.2 version of xgterm is required (see /iraf/x11iraf on this ftp archive) to run the GUI applications correctly (various bugs will be present if you use an older version, but most things will still work). Test data, tutorials, and documentation is provided for all these applications to make them as easy to use as possible. Please give them a try.

Contact with any question bug reports, or suggestions.


The GUIAPPS package requires that you are running the latest V2.11.3 IRAF release as well as the X11IRAF V1.2 release of XGterm.

Getting Started

NOAO users can begin by simply loading the GUIAPPS package in IRAF on any of the machines served by the major NOAO servers (e.g. ursa, gemini, or bigx). External sites will need to first install the GUIAPPS IRAF package. The package consists of the following tasks or packages:

	       demo - GUI Demo Task
	        spt - SPECTOOL Package
	      xhelp - GUI Help Browser Task
	        xrv - GUI Version of the RV Package
	    xapphot - GUI Aperture Photometry Package
See below for detailed instructions on starting any of the particular tasks. Sample data for the tasks is provided in the package directory guiapps$data, tasks with tutorials will use this data automatically. All tasks contain on-line help with tutorial information, tasks may be started with no command line arguments, image requirements can be selected by means of an interactive browser.



The XHelp task is a GUI front-end to the IRAF help task which provides on-the-fly conversion of help documents to HTML for presentation in the GUI or formatted PostScript for hardcopy. Help pages may be loaded on the command line, through use of a file browser, or by navigating the help databases using a familiar CL package menu scheme. It also features a search capability similar to the references task and a complete history mechanism. Like the standard help task, xhelp uses the help databases defined in the user environment or the hlib$extern.pkg file and so is unique and auto-configures to each site.


XHelp behaves much like any web browser, it can be started with a task on the command line to bring up a particular page or standalone to browse the system by selecting tasks/package from the list in the upper panel.
		gu> xhelp		# start as a browser
		gu> xhelp imexamine	# view task help 

Sample Screenshot


Spectool is an interactive one-dimensional spectrum display and analysis tool. It responds to user input through cursor keys, colon commands, mouse buttons, menus, push buttons, and other window-style graphical user interface controls. Its major functions are to display spectra in a graphical format, to modify them, and to perform various analysis operations. The display capabilities provide complete control over the graph format, convenient zoom and panning, graph and spectral line labeling, and overplotting and stacking of multiple spectra. The editing functions include pixel editing, arithmetic operations, smoothing and fitting, and dispersion solutions. Analysis functions include spectral line measures, profile fitting, radial velocity measurements, and statistics.


User's may begin experimenting with this task by loading the SPT package and running the on-line tutorial with the command:
		sp> tutorial 

Sample Screenshot


Xguiphot is a new IRAF task for doing multi-aperture moment analysis and fractional pixel aperture photometry through circular, elliptical, rectangular, or polygonal object apertures, and sky analysis through annular or offset circular, elliptical, rectangular, or polygonal sky apertures.

In interactive mode a GUI provides facilities for: selecting and displaying images and object files; creating, viewing and editing object lists; setting, reviewing, editing and saving parameter sets; selecting objects to measure from the image display or the object list using the image cursor, and / or object markers; displaying the results in both text table and graphical form; and browsing the on-line documentation. In non-interactive mode Xguiphot can be driven from an existing object file or from an object list generated at runtime.


User's may begin experimenting with this task by loading the XApphot package and running the on-line tutorials with commands such as:
		xa> xgex1		# run example tutorial #1
		xa> xgex2		# run example tutorial #2

Sample Screenshot


The XRV task Fxcor performs a Fourier cross-correlation on the input list of object and template spectra. The XRV package is a GUI layer to the IRAF package of the same name and performs all of the same functions but with an easier-to-use interface where possible. There is no new scientific functionality available in this version of the task, but users who are familiar with the existing task should find it easier to interact with the data and navigate the many commands available.


User's familiar with the non-GUI fxcor will find this task to be very similar. Novice user's can begin using the example data, once the task has begun user's can bring up the Help panel and select Tutorial to begin. is
		xr> cd xrvdata
		xr> fxcor obj temp

Sample Screenshot

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