18 May 2011 TNC2011 Terena PragueDr Malcolm ReadJISC Executive SecretaryChair of e-infraNet Steering Committee 18/05/2011 | Slide 1
Current PictureUsage Mostly SaaS to date: e-Mail, followed by storage, web services and virtual learning environments. Some use of other levels of stackReason for uptake Provision of a better service, followed by a reduction in costs, better collaboration and a reduction of hardware overheads as part of a green IT strategyBarriers to uptake Jurisdiction issues, uptime of services, security of services, lock- in and the strength of service level agreements Real costs of research computing currently hidden from most users so Cloud can look expensive 18/05/2011 | Slide 2
Which bit of the Cloud?Every level of the ‘stack’ is catered for – which is right for you? Software as a Service (SaaS) Diagram credit: www.saasblogs.com – eg, Google Apps, Microsoft 365 Platform as a Service (PaaS) – eg, MS Azure, Google App Engine Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) – ie, compute, storage, database – eg, Amazon Web Services, Vmware vCloud, Eucalyptus Do we need to add in Middleware as a Service (MaaS) – Offerings like Cassandra or Amazon Elastic Map Reduce 18/052011 | Slide 3
Why Invest in Cloud Computing? Efficient, cost effective infrastructure – provides access to industrial scale economies in deployment and use of infrastructure and applications – leads to financial benefits and in turn carbon and other environmental benefits Potential to cope with sudden peak demands for increased storage and compute requirements Provides a suitable ‘neutral platform’ for HEI / business collaboration. Lowers barriers to participation in high end computing – “e- Science for the Masses” 05/07/2011 | Slide 4
Financial CostLarge data centres can use economies of scale to besignificantly cheaper and can be flexible in delivering layersof a standardised, modularised service Particularly attractive to smaller institutions without the capital budget for wholesale rip and replace that are able to secure access to upgraded infrastructure which they could not otherwise afford NB Requires changes in culture – specifically expectations of ‘fine-tuning’ of services to meet specific requirements For example, the European Space Agency is utilizing Amazon EC2 for the data-processing needs of its Gaia mission. The 40Gb per night that Gaia will generate would have cost $1.5 million using local resources but research suggests it could cost in the $500,000 range using EC2 05/07/2011 | Slide 5
CapacityHaving more storage and compute available on demand isvery useful for dealing with sudden peak usage and projectsthat on occasion need to crunch larger data Examples – Flood simulation at Newcastle University – Machine Learning Group at the University of Cambridge used Amazon’s Elastic Map Reduce to process data sets that would have taken weeks to do locally – ApatMEMS-ID developing means of distinguishing different strains of MSRA. Cloud is used as “cloudburst” to supplement local Condor grid 05/07/2011 | Slide 6
CollaborationUsing Cloud can make it easier to collaborate withbusinesses For instance, if a spin-off company should come out of a project that uses web resources it may be easier to hand over control to something run on a virtual machine Similarly, for partnerships with industry using an external cloud provider can make it easier to collaborate as both HEIs and industry often restrict external access to their systems Services like e-Science Central1, a ‘Science-as-a-Service’ platform that combines Software-as-a-Service, social networking, and “cloud” computing remove the need to maintain one’s own systems whilst still offering control over what, when and with whom to share data1 www.esciencecentral.co.uk 05/07/2011 | Slide 7
What should we look to use the Cloud for? Good candidate scenarios for Cloud deployment that JISC has identified include those with one or more of the following characteristics: – Short timescale requirements – Infrequent use and/or no desire to maintain infrastructure – Dynamic scalability to larger capacity (‘cloudbursting’) – Transfer to commercial use – Flexibility with system configuration and/or frozen system configuration – Data hosting and backup – Cloud-based research publications – Ad hoc activities in support of research 05/07/2011 | Slide 8
Why build a private Cloud?The key word here is trust. Researchers and HE staff need tobe able to trust the reliability and integrity of the cloud theyuse as well as sustainability of data and overall reliability There are four critical enabling factors of Cloud Computing: – virtualisation and automation – pay per user software – data centres – broadband connectivity Theres no reason though why the research and HE Cloud cant be built from commercial components However the Cloud itself and the HEI’s connections to it must be as safe and reliable as the physical IT hardware it is replacing otherwise the benefits are meaningless 05/07/2011 | Slide 9
Role for NRENs NRENs are obvious candidates for brokering and delivering private cloud services, exploiting their procurement and service delivery expertise. Security (e.g. access management) is also usually managed by the NREN. 05/07/2011 | Slide 10
Federation of NRECs? If and when countries build National Research and Education (private) Clouds there is value in exploiting economies of scale at the European level. Clear parallel with NRENs and GEANT 05/07/2011 | Slide 11
Relevant UK studies Using Cloud Computing for Research1 study Report from workshop on Cloud Computing2 Currently 11 pilot projects funded by JISC and EPSRC31 www.jisc.ac.uk/whatwedo/programmes/researchinfrastructure/usingcloudcomp.aspx2 www.rcuk.ac.uk/documents/research/esci/CloudWorkshopJuly2010.pdf3 cloudresearch.jiscinvolve.org 05/07/2011 | Slide 12
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