Community clusters, storage to be off line for upgrades and maintenance

May 15, 2012  8:00am – May 17, 2012  5:00pm

Purdue’s Community Cluster Program supercomputers, related high-performance data storage and the Fortress archival data storage system will be down for scheduled maintenance for up to three days from May 15-17.

For details, see the rcac-help@purdue.edu.

The work to be performed includes upgrades and maintenance on the computing systems and on some of the power and cooling systems serving them. Individual clusters are unlikely to be affected for all of the maintenance period, says Preston Smith, manager of research support at the Rosen Center, ITaP’s research computing unit, which operates the machines and Fortress for Purdue faculty.

Research jobs submitted prior to the maintenance period that are too long to finish before the maintenance work begins will be held until the work is done and then reactivated automatically.

Through the Scheduled Maintenance website, Purdue researchers who use the community clusters and related systems can get a picture of the maintenance planned over the course of a year, allowing them to better plan their research jobs.

The website graphically lays out five two- to three-day planned maintenance widows. Generally, those windows will occur during spring break, at the end of the spring semester, before the beginning of the fall semester, over October break, and in January before the spring semester begins.

Users can see the block of days set aside for scheduled maintenance during those periods with links to details on how, and for how long, the work may affect individual clusters and data storage.

Previously, ITaP scheduled maintenance such as hardware and software updates on an ad-hoc basis when an opportunity presented itself. Users were notified ahead of time by email, postings in the System News & Updates section of the Rosen Center website and items published in other campus news outlets. Those reminders continue. However, the new Scheduled Maintenance website gives faculty and their students a tool for planning potential interruptions well ahead, Smith says. Unscheduled outages for emergency repairs are still possible, although in practice they’re infrequent.

Writer: Greg Kline, science and technology writer, Information Technology at Purdue (ITaP), 765-494-8167 (office), 765-426-8545 (mobile), gkline@purdue.edu

Originally posted: April 16, 2012

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