A general-purpose tool is provided with xmmextractor. Without detailed background knowledge of individual SAS tasks the raw ODF data can be reduced to calibrated events files and high-level science products for an individual point source in a given observation. These products will be based on the most recent calibration and on customised extraction parameters.
If no parameters are specified, xmmextractor runs fully automatically using standard settings. These settings are stored in a configuration file in the Extensible Markup Language (XML) which can be used to re run the tool later with a newer SAS version and/or updated calibration. It can also be edited with a text editor to customise a new run.
By default, science files are produced for the target coordinates, but any other coordinates can be provided in decimal sky coordinates. The size and position of the source and background extraction regions are determined automatically using the optimisation procedure eregionanalyse (see § 4.8.5). As a first start, this is recommended.
After downloading the ODF from the XMM-Newton Science Archive and initialising the SAS according to § 2.3.1, the tool is simply launched with
xmmextractor >& screenoutput.logwhere the screen output can be stored into a separate log file using the UNIX pipe command &.
Note that the environment variables SAS_CCF and SAS_ODF need to be defined and HEASOFT has to be initialized.