Researchers self backup and archive of HPC data

December 6, 2012

Overview

The HPC Group at CSM currently operates 2 high performance computing machines, RA and Mio. The new machine, BlueM, will be on line shortly. Each of these machines has the majority of its disk space designated as "scratch." The proporties of scratch are:

HPC Group's suggestion for self backup and archive

The HPC Group has developed recommendations for one of two disk servers to purchase that can be used to backup and archive researchers data. The server would be owned and managed by the research group. It would be their private storage. Data can be moved to/from the HPC platforms, thus researchers would be able to more easily reduce their dependence on scratch.

New: The HPC group is planning on adding a new data transfer node to the Mio system dedicated to moving data to/from external storage boxes.

The HPC Group recommends that research groups purchase either the RS3614xs or RS2414+ from Synology, http://www.synology.com. These are servers that are designed to hold a large number of disks. Note: the "RP" version of the RS2414+ has an extra power supply which is not particularly important.

Both hold 12 drives and with 4TB drives you can get 48TB raw in a single box. (You'll loses some capacity with a RAID setup.) The RS2414+ allows for 1 12 drive expansion box and the RS3614xs allows 2 12 drive expansion boxes. The RS3614xs has faster processors as well. These come with a web interface with a host of features all out of the box. You can also "scp" files to/from other platforms. Finally, it would also be possible to nfs mount the disks on a remote platform.

For a comparison of these two servers see the Synology web page or click here.

A web search found the RS2414+ for $1733 empty and the RS3614xs at $2,975.

These prices are for empty servers, without disks. Disks are purchased separately. The following two links are for compatible disks. Disk prices change almost daily so search for good pricing. You will see several classes of disks on the lists provided below. We recommend an Enterprise class disk. Do not purchase "Desktop" disks.

Policy with respect to research group's backup - archive servers