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XSEDE and Aristotle Cloud Federation partner to implement clouds on U.S. campuses

Two National Science Foundation-funded projects have joined forces to help university systems administrators implement cloud computing systems on their campuses.

"Combining the consulting strengths of the XSEDE Cyberinfrastructure Resource Integration (CRI) group with Aristotle Cloud Federation project expertise in OpenStack cloud implementation is a win-win for U.S. campus cyberinfrastructure administrators interested in adding clouds to their campus research resources," said John Towns, principal investigator and project director for XSEDE.

After an initial phone consultation, XSEDE staff will assist campus systems administrators or researchers onsite with the configuration of their OpenStack cloud and ensure that they have the knowledge they need to maintain it. There is no fee for XSEDE staff to travel to U.S. campuses and provide this service; the service is performed as part of the XSEDE CRI group's mission to help campus cyberinfrastructure staff manage their local computing and storage resources.

The cloud implementation process and documentation was developed by Aristotle Cloud Federation staff consultants and used by federation member Dartmouth College to deploy their first OpenStack cloud. "Aristotle project experience and lessons learned from deploying multiple campus clouds is saving us time and effort," said George Morris, director of research computing at Dartmouth.

"Clouds have a complementary role to play in campus cyberinfrastructure," said David Lifka, Aristotle project PI and vice president for information technologies and CIO at Cornell University. "The key is rightsizing the on-premise cloud so that utilization is 85% or higher; that makes it cost-effective, and campus users can then leverage public or NSF clouds when they need more resources or a Platform as a Service such as machine learning," he added.

Campus systems administrators or scientific research centers interested in participating in this opportunity should contact help@xsede.org. The OpenStack cloud implementation service will be available starting September 2019.

The mission of the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE) is to substantially enhance the productivity of a growing community of scholars, researchers, and engineers through access to advanced digital services that support open research. XSEDE is supported by National Science Foundation Office of Advanced Cyberinfrastructure (OAC) award #1548562. For more information, visit https://www.xsede.org.

The Aristotle Cloud Federation is led by the Cornell University Center for Advanced Computing (CAC), in partnership with the University at Buffalo and the University of California, Santa Barbara. The goal of the Aristotle project is to share cloud resources between institutions with cross-institution allocations. To learn more about NSF OAC project #1541215, visit https://federatedcloud.org.