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The CEA Computing Center Selects Scality for HPC Storage

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Tyna Callahan

Tyna Callahan

Sr. Director of Communications

Scality RING scales out linearly and limitlessly

The Scality RING Software Provides Object-Based Interface for High Performance Computing (HPC) at Exascale
San Francisco, CA – October 27th, 2015

Scality, the leader in software-based storage for the information age, has been selected by the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) to power its HPC storage needs at the Scientific Computing Complex of the CEA’s Military Applications Division (DAM). Scality and CEA will work together to advance their ongoing research and development projects, as well as CEA’s own HPC contributions, including the “Lustre”, “RobinHood” and “Ganesha” software solutions, and to collaborate on an exascale project environment. CEA selected the Scality RING because it allows hardware freedom; CEA can choose to implement any standard x86 hardware today, as well as in the future, without worrying about data migration or the ability to use mixed hardware. Because the Scality RING scales out linearly and limitlessly, CEA will have endless storage to meet their many large scale HPC needs.

The CEA/DAM site in Île-de-France houses one of the most high-powered computing complexes in Europe, with peak computing power greater than 3 petaflops (the ability to do one quadrillion floating point operations per second [FLOPS]) and a storage capacity of tens of petabytes.

“We’ve invested to work with Scality for the next five years,” said Jacques-Charles Lafoucrière, the Head of Scientific Computing Complex Department at CEA. “Scality RING was chosen because of its original architecture, high scalability, and great potential. Soon after implementing the RING, we were immediately able to take advantage of the agnostic hardware as well as the Scality interfaces. Looking to the future, we plan on working closely with the Scality team to create an exascale project environment with the goal of making exascale computing a reality.”

As an active member of the Lustre community, CEA focuses on the core technology as well as add-on features like Lustre HSM (hierarchical storage management) functionality and an advanced open source project for policy management called RobinHood, with the goal of dealing with the growing amount of data and metadata on its HPC filesystems. The Scality RING will be used as a testbed to develop an object-based interface for allowing Lustre volumes to be tiered with the Scality RING as a second tier.  Initial investigations will be performed concurrently to determine if a straightforward mechanism to tier data from Scality to tape for longer term archiving can be implemented. Scality’s flexible interface architecture affords CEA the ability to investigate different solutions, increasing flexibility and lowering time for adaptation.

The CEA has also developed one of the industry’s most sophisticated pNFS (parallel network file system) open source implementations, called Ganesha, a multiusage large cache NFSv4 server. Scality will integrate its current interface architecture with Ganesha, which combined will enable very large scale pNFS installations.

“In keeping with one of the main objectives from CEA’s mission statement – to become the leading technology research organization – we are looking forward to the opportunity to work with CEA to make exascale computing a reality,” said Erwan Menard, Chief Operating Officer at Scality. “One of the main tenets of the Scality RING is high performance, and it is by design, to address the mounting needs of the HPC community.”

About the CEA and the Military Applications Division:

The French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission is a public body established in October 1945 by General de Gaulle. A leader in research, development and innovation, the CEA is active in four main areas: low-carbon energies, defence and security, information technologies and health technologies. The CEA’s Military Applications Division (“DAM”) takes charge of defence and security missions. The DAM is responsible for the design, manufacture, through-life support and dismantling of the nuclear warheads that equip France’s sea- and airborne deterrence forces. It is also responsible for the design and manufacture of the nuclear reactors and reactor cores on French Navy submarines and aircraft carrier. It assists the Navy with in-service follow-up and through-life support for these reactors. The DAM is in charge of procuring strategic nuclear materials required for the nation’s deterrence. The DAM also contributes to national and global security through the technical support it provides to the authorities relative to the prevention of nuclear proliferation and terrorism and to disarmament.

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