Swiss Grid Day 2010

Swiss National Grid  /  Events  /  Swiss Grid Day 2010

Dates: November 30, 2010 - November 30, 2010

Location: Bern Switzerland


09:45 - 10:15
 Registration and Coffee
10:15 - 10:45 Opening session : Welcome and Status Report
 10:15 - 10:20 Welcome
 10:20 - 10:45 Status report from SwiNG, Dean Flanders
10:45 - 11:30

Keynote 1 : WissGrid: What could we learn from the "Grid user" perspective?
Dr. Harry Enke, University of Göttingen & Max Planck Digital Library, Munich

11:30 - 12:30
 Grid User Session
 11:30 - 11:45MetaPIGA v2.0: maximum likelihood large phylogeny estimation using the   metapopulation genetic algorithm, Michel C. Milinkovitch, Univ. of Geneva
 11:45 - 12:00SmartPen - Drawing - analogue & digital,
Julie Harboe, Art Driven Research, Faculty of Fine Arts, HSLU

12:00 - 12:15

GrunDB: a tool for validating QM algorithms in GAMESS, Riccardo Murri, University of Zurich

 12:15 - 12:30Grid computing in life science - opportunities and challenges, Lars Malmstroem, ETHZ
12:30 - 13:30 Lunch
13:30 - 14:45 Keynote 2 : Grid-related activities of the Hungarian NGI
Prof. Dr. Peter Kacsuk, Head of the Laboratory of the Parallel and Distributed Systems in MTA SZTAKI (Hungary)
14:45 - 15:45  
 Infrastructure Session
 14:45 - 15:05SMSCG: towards a national scientific computing infrastructure, Sergio Maffloletti, University of Zurich
 15:05 - 15:25

The European Grid Initiative EGI : The Swiss perspective, Andres Aeschlimann, Switch

 15:25 - 15:45CPU cycles harvesting on virtual infrastructures using Condor, Pascal Jermini, EPFL
15:45 - 18:00  Parallel sessions

Session 1:

SwiNG Assembly Meeting (closed)

Session 2:

Virtual EZ Grid presentation

Session 3:

SMSCG session
18:30 Speakers' Dinner


Keynote 1: WissGrid: What could we learn from the "Grid user" perspective?


As a German D-Grid project, WissGrid's ( objective is to establish long-term organisational and technical D-Grid structures for the academic world. WissGrid combines the heterogeneous needs from a variety of scientific disciplines (e.g. astronomy, climate research, humanities, etc.) and develops concepts for the long-term sustainable use of the organisational and technical grid infrastructure. In this context, the project aims to strengthen the organisational cooperation of scientists in the grid and to lower the entry barriers for new community grids (e.g. social sciences). Three key tasks have been identified from WissGrid's objectives:    1. Operational model for academic grid users    2. Blueprints for new community grids    3. Long-term storage for research data With the operational model, a representation of interests will be established for academic users and communities in D-Grid. Using the grid represents a conceptual and technical challenge for new scientific users and communities. For this reason, blueprints are necessary for migration to the grid and for community-specific user support. The grid has to provide for good scientific practice. This requires the long-term availability of primary research data as well as the archiving of data for re-use in further research projects. A general concept for the long-term archiving of primary research data for grid communities will be developed and implemented by WissGrid. The long-term archiving will be organisationally and technically embedded in the blueprints and the operation model.

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Keynote 2: Grid-related activities of the Hungarian NGI


he first part of the talk shortly summarizes the organization and members of the Hungarian NGI and introduces the major grid infrastructures (HunGrid, ClusterGrid and SZTAKI Desktop Grid) that have been created and maintained by the members of the Hungarian NGI. HunGrid has been established as the Hungarian VO of EGEE and as such is based on the gLite middleware and provides the services that were developed in the series of EGEE projects. The major contributor of HunGrid is RMKI (KFKI Research Institute for Particle and Nuclear Physics). The other nationwide grid system, the ClusterGrid, has been developed and maintained by NIIFI. Meanwhile HunGrid provides grid services continuously in a 24/7 way, ClusterGrid connects the computer labs of many Hungarian universities during the nights and weekends. Finally, SZTAKI Dekstop Grid is a volunteer BOINC project that can accommodate several applications that require very large volume of computational resources. The talk will also shortly explain the operational services of the above mentioned grid systems.

The experience with SZTAKI Desktop Grid was used in the EU FP7 EDGeS (Enabling Desktop Grid for e-Science) project to integrate gLite based grids with BOINC and XtremWeb based desktop grids. After the successful completion of EDGeS two follow-up EU FP7 projects were started in the 1st of June 2010: EDGI (European Desktop Grid Initiative) and DEGISCO (Desktop Grids for International Scientific Collaboration). EDGI extends the results of EDGeS for further grid middleware like ARC and Unicore. It provides production level integrated service grid -> desktop grid infrastructure in order to enhance the service grid resources with volunteer and private desktop grids. It also extends the desktop grid resources with cloud resources when QoS requirements are given. The second part of the talk will explain the highlights of the EDGI project.

The third part of the talk introduces the EU FP7 project that aims at integrating some of the major workflow systems (ASKALON, Kepler, MOTEUR, Pegasus, P-GRADE, Triana) developed in Europe and in the US. The objectives of the project are to enable the sharing and integration of workflows written in different workflow systems. The project will create the SHIWA Simulation Platform consisting of a workflow repository and a workflow-oriented portal. Workflow developers can store their ready-to-use workflows in the SHIWA repository and end-users can download and execute them on every major DCIs (clusters, grids and clouds) by the SHIWA portal that will be based on P-GRADE portal developed by SZTAKI a member of the Hungarian NGI. The talk will explain how the coarse-grain and fine-grain workflow interoperability will be solved by SHIWA.

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GrunDB: a tool for validating QM algorithms in GAMESS


GrunDB is an interface for starting GAMESS analyses of molecules from the online GAMESS.UZH database on the Grid resources from the Swiss National Infrastructure SMSCG and local compute clusters.

Given a template GAMESS input file, GRunDB will launch a GAMESS job for each molecule of the chosen subset(s) of the GAMESS.UZH database, manage the job lifecycle, and finally print out a comparison table of stoichiomery reference data (from the database) and the same quantitites as computed by GAMESS.

GRunDB is a Linux command-line program and is structured so to interoperate with other programs from the GC3Utils suite, giving users flexibility in managing the computational job lifecycle.

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Grid computing in life science - opportunities and challenges


Grid computing in life science brings many opportunities but comes with some challenges. The main challenges is the heterogeneity of the tasks at hand. Many work flows constitute several applications, some are I/O bound, others are CPU bound and yet others need access to memory or low-latency connections to relational databases. Much software is developed without grids in mind and remain moving targets making it difficult to grid-enable the software. One approach is to run the workflows on heterogeneous infrastructure each optimized for a certain type of problem. The challenge is then to make this available to biologists and to coordinate the flow of information. Here, we present a web-based portal closely integrated with a meta-data store and a data set server. It allows to submit jobs both on traditional clusters with good I/O characteristics, local infrastructure in addition to traditional grids and desktop grids.

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SMSCG: towards a national scientific computing infrastructure


The Swiss Multi-Science Computing Grid (SMSCG) project is the Swiss national grid infrastructure endorsed by SwiNG and funded by the AAA/Switch program.
It provides all technical, procedural and social means required to operate a large scale infrastructure.
The result is a common scientific computing platform with a portfolio of applications from life-science, earth-science, physics and computer science, and is open to all interested scientist of the higher education sector in Switzerland.
Services for resource providers as well as for end-users will be presented.
Plan for the integration with national and international initiatives will be also detailed.

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The European Grid Initiative EGI : The Swiss perspective


The European Grid Initiative has become a reality with the creation of the foundation and the beginning of the four year project InSPIRE, co-funded by the European Commission. Three institutions from Switzerland participate in this project: ETHZ, representing the Swiss Institute of Particle Physics (CHIPP), SWITCH and the University of Zurich. Currently, SWITCH acts as  leading institution with SwiNG taking over this role in 2012.

We review the steps leading to the European Grid Initiative and give an overview of the current operational setup.

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CPU cycles harvesting on virtual infrastructures using Condor


Server and desktop virtualization are technologies always more presents in all kind of organizations, and it becomes interesting to harvest CPU cycles also on that kind of infrastructure. This talk will look at how the Condor middleware can be used in conjunction with virtualization software and what are the challenges in doing so.

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Virtual EZ Grid presentation

The Virtual EZ Grid project ( ) is an AAA/Switch funded collaboration with four institutes: UniGE, UniNe, USI and HES-SO. The main goal of the project was to setup a sustainable desktop grid platform, easy to install, deploy and use. This platform is based on the XtremWeb-CH computing system (XWCH: ).  Three main objectives have been targeted:

  • Developing a friendly user interfaces to deploy applications and to install/monitor/administer the platform.
  • Bridging the platform with the SMSCG service grid infrastructure.
  • Evaluating and testing the Virtual EZ Grid platform with two scientific medical applications.

The goal of this session is to present to end users and grid applications developers how the Virtual EZ Grid could be setup and used in concrete cases. The session is organised as follow:

15:45-16:00: General overview of the Vitual EZ Grid platform, Marko Niinimaeki, HES-SO
16:00-16:15:Gridifying and porting applications on Virtual EZ Grid: a case study, Mohamed Ben Belgacem, UniGE & HES-SO
16:15-16:45:Demonstration, Q&A: Virtual EZ Grid team

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Location : Bern



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