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This tutorial will show you how to examine the output of a MAKER-P run using JBrowse.


This is a draft tutorial - under development: caveat lector



This tutorial assumes you have the following inputs:

  • MAKER-P produced gff files
  • Reference Genome
  • *nix computing setup that satisfies the JBrowse requirements (See: - we will be using an Atmosphere instance for this.

Source materials, references, and related tutorials

To complete this tutorial, you will need to:

In addition to the sources above, material for this tutorial is also derived from:

  • JBrowse Tutorial: Link
  • Additional iPlant Documentation: Link

Step one: Launch an Atmosphere instance

For the purpose of this tutorial, we will use the workshop instance: TSW Workshop Williams 1.0


  1. Log in to Atmosphere (ensure you have access - go to  - if Atmosphere is not listed under 'My Services' scroll down to Available Services and request access to Atmosphere). 
  2. Click 'Launch New Instance'
  3. Under 'Select an Image' search for 'TSW Workshop Williams 1.0'
  4. If desired, name your image.
  5. If you will be using the sample data, you may leave this instance size as 'tiny 1(1 CPUs, 4GB memory, 30G disk), if working with your own data you may choose an appropriate size.
  6. Click Launch Instance

Launching an instance should take 15-20 minutes; launch times and instance sizes are subject to the capacity of Atmosphere at any given time.


There are several appropriate Atmosphere images for this tutorial including

  •  MAKER-P_2.31_3_JBrowse

Once you work through this tutorial, choose the image an instance size appropriate for your dataset.

Step two: Connect to your Atmosphere instance and import sample data and JBrowse

In this tutorial, we have left a lot for you to do - this should be very close to setting up and analyzing the data on most any system.


The status of your Atmosphere instance must be active in order to connect. You will need the ip address of your instance to continue.

1. SSH into your Atmosphere instance; enter your password when prompted

2. Configure iCommands

When prompted, enter the following values to complete the configuration


Host name (DNS) of the server to connect to

Port number


irods user name

(your iPlant username)

irods zone


Current iRODS password

(your iPlant password)

3. Import a folder containing the sample data and the JBrowse software from the iPlant Data Store using an iget command; then switch into that directory:

4. Unzip both files in the 'maker_viz' folder:

Step three: Gather all the GFF files from your sample output and place them in their own directory


We don't have to do this now, but since it is only one command, let's go ahead. Also, we basically need the GFF files in once place for one of the later configuration scripts so that's why we'll do it here. We also happen to expect (in the case of this sample data) that the GFFs we are looking for will be labeled as 'Chr...'.

1. Find all the gff files (At least the ones we care about, e.g. 'Chr*.gff') and move them to the top level 'sample_MAKER-P_v.2.3_output' directory


In this case, we should find 3 GFF files (Chr1sub.gff, Chr2sub.gff, Chr3sub.gff). You can verify this with 'ls ./sample_MAKER-P_v.2.3_output/'

Step four: Setup JBrowse and start the apache server

1. Move the JBrowse directory to a new location which the user can write to,


On your Atmosphere instance, your iPlant password is also your sudo password

Configure ownership to ensure write access:


$LOGNAME is your shell username, and on your Atmosphere instance is your iPlant username

2. Change into the new JBrowse directory

3. Complete the JBrowse setup (Be sure you are in the location '/var/www/JBrowse-1.11.6/' )

4. Start the Apache server (or make sure it is already running)

5. Find your host name, copy down the result of the following command.

6. Open a web browser or new tab and test your JBrowse setup by entering the following URL:


So for example, if your hostname was '' your URL would be:


Turn on some of the tracks in the left-side menu to see the features

Step five: Prepare your MAKER-P output for visualization using JBrowse

We will run two scripts on the MAKER-P data, one to prepare the selected GFF files and another to prepare the genome. These scripts are part of the standard JBrowse download.

1. Still in the '/var/www/JBrowse-1.11.6/' directory, run the maker2jbrowse on the GFF files we copied in the sample_output folder (this will take a minute to run).


The output is by default a directory called /var/www/JBrowse-1.11.6/data you can specify an output directory using the '-o' option

2. Prepare the reference genome (which you used in MAKER-P, and which has been provided in the sample data) using the script.

3. Move the reference genome and the output to the Jbrowse data folder:

Step six: View the sample data in JBrowse

Using the URL from Step 4 (No. 6) load your data in a web browser:

http://your_host_name_goes_here/JBrowse-1.11.6/index.html?data=data where data is the name of the output folder we used for the maker2jbrowse script (by default called data). 

For example:




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