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Read Me

Welcome to AMOS Assembler. A Modular Open Source Assembler.
website: <>
contact: <>

   AMOS is open source software. Please see the `COPYING' file for
details. For documentation, please refer to the Documentation
section. For building and installation instructions please see the
Installation section.

Brief Summary

   The AMOS consortium is committed to the development of open-source
whole genome assembly software. The project acronym (AMOS) represents
our primary goal -- to produce A Modular, Open-Source whole genome
assembler. Open-source so that everyone is welcome to contribute and
help build outstanding assembly tools, and modular in nature so that
new contributions can be easily inserted into an existing assembly
pipeline. This modular design will foster the development of new
assembly algorithms and allow the AMOS project to continually grow and
improve in hopes of eventually becoming a widely accepted and deployed
assembly infrastructure. In this sense, AMOS is both a design
philosophy and a software system.

   Because of its modular nature, AMOS cannot be described in one
paragraph since it is a composite of many different systems. See the
Pipeline section for quick descriptions of each pipeline, or the
Documentation section on where to find comprehensive documentation.


   Please follow the instructions in the `INSTALL' file for building
and installation. The `INSTALL' file is only a generic installation
document, so any AMOS specific installation notes are listed below.

   Once `make install' is issued, the installed scripts and Perl
modules must not be moved. Thus, convince yourself of the installation
directory beforehand and set the $PREFIX variable for `configure'
accordingly. AMOS makes use of a few custom installation directories
not mentioned in `INSTALL', they are as follows. $datadir, $libdir and
$includedir are set by `configure', see `configure --help' for more

   - Documentation will be installed in $datadir/doc/amos-[version]
   - AMOS libraries and Perl modules will be installed in $libdir/AMOS
   - TIGR libraries and Perl modules will be installed in $libdir/TIGR
   - AMOS headers will be installed in $includedir/AMOS
   - TIGR headers will be installed in $includedir/TIGR

  In addition, certain parts of the AMOS package require the X
windowing system along with the Qt libraries. Parameters for these
packages may be modified with the following options:

   --x-includes=DIR      X include files are in DIR
   --x-libraries=DIR     X library files are in DIR
   --with-x              use the X Window System
   --with-Boost-dir=DIR  Directory in which to find the ./boost folder for the
                         Boost toolkit
   --with-qmake-qt4=DIR  Path to qmake using Qt version 4.x

Please see the INSTALL file for more information and Cygwin and OS X
specific instructions.


   The AMOS package makes use of Python and Perl (Practical Extraction
and Report Language). Python and Perl are available on most systems
and the latest versions can be downloaded free of charge. AMOS
requires Perl version 5.6.0 or later. If `perl' or `python' are
available from your system PATH, all is well, if not you will need to
instruct `configure' where they are located by setting the
environment variable PERL and PYTHON to the full path of `perl' and
`python' respectively (see the Defining Variables section in the
`INSTALL' file). Some Perl scripts in the AMOS package require
additional modules that you should install:
   DBI (
   Statistics::Descriptive (
   XML::Parser (

   AMOScmp and minimus2 make use of the NUCmer whole genome alignment
utility which is part of the MUMmer package. If you wish to run AMOScmp,
you will need download and install MUMmer (available for free from
<>). If `nucmer' is available from
your system PATH, all is well, if not you will need to instruct
`configure' where it is located by setting the environment variable
NUCMER to the full path of `nucmer' (see the Defining Variables
section in the `INSTALL' file).

   The validation pipeline `amosvalidate' also depends on Nucmer, but
it is not essential to the validation process. If you wish to run
amosvalidate without the "alignment breakpoints" step, comment out
steps 600-710 with '#' in the `amosvalidate' script.

   The minimus2-blat pipeline relies on BLAT instead of nucmer.

   The AMOS assembly viewer Hawkeye relies on X windows and the Qt4 
toolkit. Note that the Qt toolkit is somewhat volatile, so it is 
important to install Qt4 and not a newer or older version. If Qt is not 
centrally installed on your system, you will need to do so to make 
use of this graphical viewer. The configure script should be able 
to identify most standard Qt installations, however you may need 
to set the `--with-qmake-qt4' configure option to the location of 
your Qt package. If all else fails, you may have to build the
viewer independently. If so, make AMOS without hawkeye, and then
cd into the src/hawkeye directory, run 'qmake', and then 'make'.

   Finally, if you need the toAmos_new file conversion tool, you will
need to have the Expat XML parsing library:


   Basic documentation for the individual pipelines is located in the
`doc' subdirectory. Comprehensive documentation can be found on
the AMOS website <>.


   Listed here are the current AMOS pipelines available. Source files
for the pipelines are in `src/Pipeline' and will be installed in
$bindir as executable scripts. Please see individual documentation for
each pipeline in the `doc' directory.

   - minimus -
   Minimus is an assembly pipeline designed specifically for small
   data-sets, such as the set of reads covering a specific gene. Note
   that the code will work for larger assemblies (we have used it to
   assemble bacterial genomes), however, due to its stringency, the
   resulting assembly will be highly fragmented.  For large and/or
   complex assemblies the execution of Minimus should be followed by
   additional processing steps, such as scaffolding.

   - Minimo -
   Minimo uses the same assembly strategy as minimo but offers more
   flexibility in the sequence input, output and processing.

   - minimus2 
   minimus2 is an assembly pipeline designed for merging two sequence sets
   (Example: the contigs generated by two assembly processes)
   It uses a nucmer based overlap detector instead of the hash-overlap program 
   used by the minimus pipeline. 

   - minimus2-blat
   This pipeline performs the same function as minimus2, but uses BLAT instead
   of nucmer for the alignments, which provides a speedup.

   - AMOScmp -
   AMOScmp provides a general overlap-layout-consensus pipeline for
   assembly, but with a twist. The overlap phase of the process is
   replaced with an alignment to a reference, i.e. all sequencing reads
   are aligned to a finished reference sequence and their alignments are
   used to determine their layout position.

   - AMOScmp-shortReads -
   Modified version AMOScmp for assembling short reads
   Differences compared to AMOScmp:
     * smaller nucmer alignment cluster size (20 vs 65)
     * smaller make-consensus alignment wiggle value (2 vs 15)

   - AMOScmp-shortReads-alignmentTrimmed -
   Very similar to AMOScmp-shortReads but it does a reference based alignment 
   trimming of the reads prior to the assembly. 
   Differences compared to AMOScmp-shortReads:
     * aligns the reads to reference using nucmer
     * determines zero coverage regions
     * extracts the read clear ranges from the alignment(delta) file
     * exrtends the read clear ranges for reads adjacent to zero coverage regions
     * updates the bank with the new clear ranges
     * updates the alignment(delta) file with the new read lengths and clear ranges

   - goBambus2 -
   goBambus2 is a pipeline to drive the Bambus2 modules, designed to
   scaffold polymorphic and metagenomic data

   - amosvalidate -
   Amosvalidate is a validation pipeline for genome assemblies. This
   pipeline includes a collection of methods for ascertaining the
   quality of an assembly, and examines multiple measures of assembly
   quality to pinpoint potential mis-assemblies. Validation techniques
   include mate-pair validation, repeat analysis, coverage analysis,
   identification of correlated read polymorphisms, and read alignment
   breakpoint analysis. Regions of the assembly exhibiting multiple
   signatures of mis-assembly are flagged as suspicious and output by
   amosvalidate for further examination.

   - hawkeye -
   Hawkeye is a visual analytics tool for genome assembly analysis and
   validation, designed to aid in identifying and correcting assembly
   errors. Hawkeye blends the best practices from information and
   scientific visualization to facilitate inspection of large-scale
   assembly data while minimizing the time needed to detect
   mis-assemblies and make accurate judgments of assembly quality.

August 2011