How to Learn ROOT

Is ROOT a computer language?

No. Here are some examples of computer languages.

What is ROOT?

ROOT is an object-oriented framework (also described as a "data analysis framework") written in C++ that was created by these 2 physicists at CERN to replace the FORTRAN computer library in 2003. It was originally designed for particle physics data analysis, but is now in heavy use in astro-particle physics experiments such as HESS, VERITAS, Ice Cube, Milagro, Fermi and the Pierre Auger Observatory. (source)

Why do we use ROOT?

ROOT does what physicists do: It makes plots. Click here for an easy to read Powerpoint.

Do I need to download ROOT?

Most likely no. A user account will be created for you, where you log in (from the terminal) using ssh, enter the password created for you (which you can later change) and then type "root".

A screen such as this should appear in the command window.

Is there a tutorial?

Yes. A popular one is written by Prof. William Seligman of Columbia University. His home page is an interesting read (click the small "cornify" button at the bottom a few times for a real treat). The tutorial has developed over the past 13 years, and appears to have been created for a 2-day REU seminar. The tutorial can be found here: ROOT tutorial . (Unfortunately, you won't be able to complete all of the exercises because we don't have access to Prof. Seligman's files).

Additional Resources?
  • LinkSCEEM is funded by the European Union. There are 5 Powerpoint tutorials that can be found here: Day 1 , Day 2 , Day 3 , Day 4 , and Day 5 .
  • The official ROOT web page is located here.
  • The ROOT Reference Guides have an abundance of information. Check your terminal screen for which version of ROOT you are running. The one running at the time of this post is version 5.34.00 from 2013.
  • The ROOT User Guide can be helpful.
  • There are also some posts here on FOSWiki created by the ATLAS Single Top group, although some of the information is similar to what is discussed on this page.

  • If you encounter the following error message end with ' } ',' @ ': abort > then enter the following: @
Topic revision: r8 - 11 Jul 2014, KristaSmith

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