SC19 Proceedings

The International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage, and Analysis

Poster 90: You Have to Break It to Make It: How On-Demand, Ephemeral Public Cloud Projects with Alces Flight Compute Resulted in the Open-Source OpenFlightHPC Project


Authors: Cristin Merritt (Alces Flight Limited; Alces Software Ltd, UK), Wil Mayers (Alces Flight Limited), Stu Franks (Alces Flight Limited)

Abstract: Over three years ago the Alces Flight team made a decision to explore on-demand public cloud consumption for High Performance Computing (HPC). Our premise was simple, create a fully-featured, scalable HPC environment for research and scientific computing and provide it as a free subscription service to researchers in order to study how they would approach and consume this then new technology. This tool, Alces Flight Compute, would set out to chart how far away from the traditional bare-metal platforms our subscribers were willing to go. What we didn’t expect was that to get to their destination, our users would proceed to take our tool apart. This deconstruction has resulted in a new approach to HPC environment creation (the open-source OpenFlightHPC project), helped us better understand cloud adoption strategies, and handed over a set of guidelines to help those looking to bring public cloud into their HPC solution.

Best Poster Finalist (BP): no

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