|This is a review of a revised manuscript on the introduction and documentation of ESM-Tools by Dirk Barbi and co-authors. ESM-Tools aims to provide the German climate modelling community with a standard, easy-to-use/adapt ‘wrapper’ from downloading the model code all the way to model output post-processing. The tool is expected to ease the technical burden for climate researchers, especially for young researchers and those relatively new to climate modelling. As earth system models and their component coupling are getting more complex, and even formidable in some cases, I personally appreciate the initiative and the approach taken by the authors, and this manuscript, together with their website and online documentation, would serve as a very useful reference for the general climate modelling community, especially for those working with e-infrastructures.|
The revised manuscript is overall in good shape and fits the scope and reader interests of GMD. However, in my view some revision/clarification is still needed before the manuscript can be accepted for publication. I have my specific comments listed below (most of them are minor though), followed by some technical corrections such as typo and grammar, etc.
Since version 5.0 of ESM-Tools has been released, I wonder if it would make sense for the authors to document the latest version, provided that the upgrade from 4.0 to 5.0 is not too dramatic, such that a significant part of the text needs to be updated/revised. This is up to the authors to decide.
> I’d suggest the authors state upfront that ESM-Tools is not a coupling software early in the Introduction and/or Abstract. I thought (or at least was in doubt) it has this capacity until I read later in the manuscript. Such a statement can be added at, for example P1L18 and P2L37.
> P1L11: …the ESM-Tools “are”…
The authors treat the ESM-Tools randomly either as singular or plural throughout the whole manuscript. Please make it consistent (I think it should be a singular noun).
> throughout the text, the authors use inconsistent references to the figures, e.g. fig x, fig (x), Figure x. Please make it consistent and comply with GMD format if any.
> P1L12-13: In fact, … standalone simulations.
I don’t see this sentence as important info in the abstract, as the previous sentence has mentioned this point. If the authors decide to have it, more information on FESM2, ECHAM, ICON is needed, for example at least on what components they are (ocean or atmosphere or). Full names are usually needed but that would make the abstract tedious.
I don’t quite understand when the authors say that ‘ESMs are usually written for a specific purpose’. It reads ambiguously to me; do the authors mean ‘configured for a specific purpose’?
I don’t understand what ‘script-based coupling’ is.
Do the authors mean ‘nesting’ of model components here? Since it is a tool for coastal ocean modelling, it should only have the ocean model component, right?
> Figure 1:
I don’t see the point to have this as a figure. These are very basic lines and the description in the text is sufficient. In addition, the caption is a bit colloquial, e.g. it could be ‘Some basic requirements need to be met before…’
I agree the tool would save lots of time for researchers, but I don’t see how the tool would have the ‘potential of reducing model diversity’.
This sentence seems to be coming out of the blue, especially ‘solving a model run error’?
This part of the text does not fit the scope of this subsection (2.2.2 YAML Configurations) and should be moved elsewhere, for example in the discussion.
> I also find the tool very useful for educational purposes and for provenance/reproducibility of model simulations. The authors have mentioned the latter, but perhaps that can be stressed even more.
I don’t understand this ‘compile time switches’.
> Table 3 seems to be not referred to in the text at all.
This is up to the authors to decide if they think it could be useful: it would be good to elaborate a bit more on the tool’s log file and post-processing capacity. For example, for the log files, does the tool collect all the log info from each component and put/condense them together, or most log info still stays with their respective component? For the post-processing, does the tool offer things like netcdf conversion, climatology/time series calculation, or even cmorisation to name a few? The feature of online automatic cmorisation would be very useful for many.
I like this esm_vis feature a lot, but I don’t agree on this point, since modellers can always sanity check the simulations anytime without having to wait for the whole run to be completed. I think the main advantage is that it is very convenient/handy to use and save modellers’ time.
> P19L387-398: these two paragraphs are almost identical to the first two paragraphs in this section? Please check.
> P1L20: move ‘lately’ up in the sentence, e.g. ‘Compared to previous versions, ESM-Tools has lately been …’
> P2L42: The abbreviation HPC should come earlier.
> P2L51: please give the full name of SMHI.
> P2L55: ‘This approach is also…’
> P3L67-68: should be updated; also see my first comment.
> P3L78: ‘in our opinion it lacks…’
> P3L84: remove ‘the’
> P4L89: please fix the ref for Righi et al.
> P4L101: ‘The tool’s application…’
> P4L105: ‘…applying an ESM…’; the full name has been defined at the beginning of the manuscript.
> P5L119, 122: ‘dependent’
> P5L127: remove ‘are’
> P5L137, and elsewhere in the manuscript: no space before and after ‘/’
> P5L138: ‘…, and some features will be…’
> P7L161: should the footnote to YAML come earlier in the draft where it first appeared?
> P7L163: ‘…, while the ESM-Tools…’ grammar issue; please consider starting a new sentence.
> P7L174: ‘organize’?
> Table 1, in the row of esm_calendar: ‘’but also works…’
> P8L178: ‘to alter’
> P8L180: ‘this dictionary’
> P8L181: ‘execution of a compute job’
> Figure 3 caption: ‘Section of…’
> P8L192: ‘to generate’
> P8L192: ‘and in this sense can enable…’
> P10L233: please try to avoid words like ‘nicely’
> P11L242: ‘for us’, the authors mean ‘core developers’? and the previous ‘developers’ are ‘contributing developers’?
> P12L279: please avoid using ‘you’, ‘your’. This also applies to P16L339 and P17L346.
> P12L280: ‘the remainder of the supercomputer’? not clear to me
> P14L307: ‘and the code’
> P16L316: ‘the tool, which…’
> P16L319: remove ‘even’?
> P16L342: ‘configuration’; ‘As an example, …’
> P17L347: ‘see an example again from…’
> P18L355: ‘… Project phase 6, CMIP6, …’
> P18L371: ‘, which were discussed…’
> P18L372: ‘point out that…’
> P18L378: ‘as if it were…’
> P19L383: ‘, as we provide…’
> P19L407: ‘webpage’
> P20L409: ‘upcoming’