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Recently, I ran an SCF calculation on a remote server, expecting to run an NSCF calculation afterward. So far, all the SCF calculations I have run on my personal computer have produced a 'charge-density.dat' file upon completion. However, on the server, it generated a 'charge-density.hdf5' file. Should I convert the .hdf5 format to the .dat format in order to run the NSCF? If so, how should I perform the conversion, or is it possible to use the .hdf5 file format as it is?

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Whether the produced data files are in .hdf5 format or .dat format depends on how Quantum ESPRESSO (QE) is compiled in your machine. From the description you gave, it seems that the QE in your personal computer is compiled without the HDF5 support while the QE in the remote server has that support. Since you want to have file portability (maybe to run post-processing in your local machine after obtaining the ground state from the remote server), it is suggested to use HDF5 support. After you recompile QE with hdf5 support, you can use the .hdf5 files in your local machine that were generated in the remote server. If I recall correctly, the code sometimes complain about path error for pseudopotentials which can be solved by changing the path accordingly in the data-file-schema.xml file.

The easiest way for you to use the .hdf5 files as it is with a HDF5 enabled QE installation. Just reconfigure QE with --with-hdf5=yes and recompile it. In case the configuration script couldn't find the default hdf5 installation, or if you do not have HDF5 installed already in your personal computer and you want to compile them from the source, see this guide.

If you do not want to recompile, there might be some way to convert the .hdf5 files to .dat files but I doubt that is straightforward. You can extract some data from both of these file formats. See these fortran snippets for example: How to read a selected wave function from a wfc#k.dat file inside the prefix.save directrory, content of the HDF5 version of the collected wave functions files, Content of the wfc collected files in the fortran unformatted option. Related MMSE question: How to read QE's wfc*.dat files with python

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