Frequently Asked Questions


  •  Which kind of computer do I need to run PRIMO?

PRIMO runs on any computer equipped with an Intel 64 bits processor and a 64 bits Windows operating system. See chapter Installation in the User's Manual for further details.

  •  There are windows in PRIMO that appear blank or some graphical output is missing.

Starting from version, PRIMO needs to run on a computer with OpenGL 4.0 or higher. To verify which version of OpenGL is running in your computer click the 'OpenGL version' button located in the About window found in Help > About.


  •  Which are the requirements for running PRIMO remotely on a computer server?

It is possible to use PRIMO running remotely. For doing so, the local computer should have installed Microsoft Remote Desktop. There are versions of this software for Windows, MacOS, iOS and Android. There also exist similar programs for most common Linux distributions. The remote computer must have installed Windows Server 2016 (earlier versions are not supported). The remote computer should have a GPU card installed such that enables OpenGL 4.0 or higher on remote desktop connections. We have successfully tested the NVDIA Quadro K620.


  • I have a computer cluster running Linux. Could I install PRIMO there?

No. Nevertheless, we have that possibility in mind and in the future we shall produce a version of PRIMO for running in Linux clusters.

  • Does PRIMO run in parallel?

PRIMO distributes a job among all processing cores of a single computer. That is, if you have a computer with 2 CPUs with 6 processing cores each, you can run 12 times faster than with a single core calculation. Distribution of jobs among cores from different computers is not supported (see, however, the previous entry).

  • How long does it take for PRIMO to simulate a typical case?

If using PENELOPE on an 8-core computer, most problems take from 1 to 3 hours to obtain a dose distribution, starting from a precalculated phase-space file, with a voxel size of 2x2x2 mm3 and a standard statistical uncertainty of 2%. DPM is about 7 times faster than PENELOPE.

  •  My linac model (or MLC, or wedge, etc.) is not included in PRIMO. What should I do?

PRIMO is an ongoing project. We will continue to introduce new models, parts, and features. 


  • I have run PRIMO straight out of the box and my experimental dose profiles do not match the simulated results. What should I do?

Before proceeding with production runs it is usually necessary to test several primary beam energies until the experimental profiles are matched. The initial beam parameters suggested by PRIMO are already a reasonably good ansatz, but they still need to be tailored to each individual linac. Once the optimal energy for each nominal value has been identified, a library of phase-space files of the upper part of the linac can be generated. This library will reduce the required simulation time in subsequent simulations.