Challenges facing production grids Page: 2 of 16
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Modern researchers depend on a rapidly increasing amount of computation and electronic
data to make progress. Individuals, small research teams, and university groups, need to gain
access to and learn to use remote resources. Usable common distributed infrastructures lower
the barriers for these groups to benefit from distributed facilities as well as increase local
productivity by enabling sharing of resources across the campus or local region.
1. The Context
The challenges facing production Grids today are threefold: First to provide high reliability,
high throughput, scalable, multi-user, distributed data centers which operate around the clock
and around the world; second to provide the security, technologies and infrastructure to serve
an increasingly large and demanding community of researchers, educators, commercial
companies and the general public; and third provide usable services that facilitate the entry of
new participants in the use of distributed computational infrastructures.
Present experience where the Grid is driven by and embedded with the end user
communities is encouraging in the success of matching expectation to realization and in the
effectiveness of the operating infrastructure. This inclusion of all the actors - the users, the
facility owners, and the technology providers, is a key component of the success. One of the
larger distributed facilities, the Open Science Grid (OSG) Consortium, provides such an
example. The scientists from the internal stakeholder communities - especially the Large
Hadron Collider (LHC) ATLAS and CMS experiments and the Laser Interferometer
Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO) - are immersed into the project in all aspects of the
management and technical program. Similarly the computer science researchers and
information technologists, who provide the software and services on which the infrastructure
relies, participate fully in the leadership and all activities of the Consortium.
1.1. The Open Science Grid Distributed Facility
The Open Science Grid distributed facility, shown in Figure 1, includes: sites which provide
shared storage and processing resources; communities, or Virtual Organizations, which
include the users of the facility working in collaborating groups; and the common
infrastructure which provides services to integrate and operate the facility as a whole. The
infrastructure also provides gateways to other Grids.
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Pordes, Ruth. Challenges facing production grids, article, June 1, 2007; Batavia, Illinois. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc878088/m1/2/: accessed March 24, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.