Setting up a DNA analysis workstation

Jil Tardiff jtardiff at westnet.com
Tue May 18 14:15:14 EST 1999

Hi folks,

I'm trying to make life a bit easier for my student and I'd like some

We have a PC in the lab currently runnning Win95. It is a standalone
machine (not hooked up to the Net) although it might be hooked up

The sorts of analyses we need to do are mostly centered around primer
design (this is the *big* issue), restriction maps,  protein/nucleotide
alignment and sequence editing.
One of the big (expensive) packages is currently out of the question.

Up until now, we've been using mostly Win software (DNAClub, ClustalW/X,
and Genedoc). It has been OK, but it is a bit of a pain to swing from
program to program and we have yet to find a good Win version of a
Primer design package. The big human genetics lab here swears by Primer,
but there is no Win version.

So, my question is this: do you folks think it is worthwhile to add a
Linux partition to the lab machine and just use Linux for our DNA
analysis needs?  I know that a number of packages exist for Linux,  but
if any end-users could tell me about their experiences and suggestions
for the most user-friendly programs, I would greatly appreciate it.  My
student is a complete Linux/UNIX newbie, so I would like to make this as
straightforward as possible for her. I'm also intrigued by GDE, but
setting it up seems a bit formidable.

I already have Linux up and running on my NT box, so while I'm not a
guru, I'm certainly not a newbie.

Thanks in advance,

Jil Tardiff

jtardiff at westnet.com

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