General questions, bug reports etc concerning this task should be e-mailed to

Task Author: Lorraine Breedon

Current Version

The current version can be downloaded from Note:
  1. You'll need to change the first line of the script from
    to point to your local perl installation (type % which perl at the unix prompt to find your local perl installation)
  2. You'll need to have the PERL libnet module which includes the NET::FTP perl modules already installed.


A script to manage a local CALDB containing HEASARC-supported missions BUT WHERE personal/locally produced cal datasets have been added. This script prompts the user for the full path to their local CALDB. Then using this path as the current working directory it downloads tar files for requested mission/instruments via anonymous ftp from the HEASARC CALDB.

As input, no parameters are required. However an optional input parameter (dspace_check) will force the script to perform disk space checks prior to uncompression and untarring of each file. If omitted no checks performed!

For each tar file the script then:

  • Uncompresses and untars the file
  • Creates the appropriate directory structures
  • Populates the directory tree with files
  • Indexes any new HEASARC calibration file into the local caldb.indx: flags the older HEASARC versions as `bad'; ignores any local datasets.

Each compressed tar file for a given mission/instrument contains :

  • ./data/{mission}/{instrument}/../../calfilenames
  • ./data/tarredcif (the caldb.indx file for the {mission}/{instrument}).
  • ** ./data/{missn}/{instr}/goodfiles_{missn}_{instr}_special.ASCII (list of all good quality cal files within the caldb.indx together with last-modification-date info ....this ASCII file is necessary to perform any future up-dates to the local caldb.indx of a HEASARC-supported mission but with personal/locally produced datasets added).
  • ** ./data/input.ASCII (contains 4 lines..{mission};{instrment}, {instrument alias}; name of special ASCII file).

The above ** files are used ONLY when the local manager is up-dating/ maintaining HEASARC-supported missions which have been CUSTOMISED to also contain personal/locally produced datasets. i.e. they are thus used in this script.

Page author:
Michael F. Corcoran
Last updated: Wednesday, 20-Oct-2021 10:38:21 EDT.