Ceph on the Brain: Storage and Data-Movement Supporting the Human Brain Project

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In this video from the 2018 Swiss HPC Conference, Adrian Tate from Cray and Stig Telfer from StackHPC present: Ceph on the Brain ~ Storage and Data-Movement Supporting the Human Brain Project (HBP).

“The Human Brain Project is an EU flagship project that seeks to “provide researchers worldwide with tools and mathematical models for sharing and analysing large brain data they need for understanding how the human brain works.” The HBP encompasses massively parallel applications in neuro-simulation, with advanced computational and data movement requirements way beyond current technological capabilities. It will therefore drive innovation in HPC. As part of the R&D co-design, the HBP sub-contracted Cray to develop a pilot system next-generation supercomputer and software stack to address cutting-edge brain simulation and analysis activities. This system features a novel memory / storage hierarchy consisting of new memories, nvRAM and SSDs, accessed through Ceph over the Intel Omnipath interconnect.

This talk will describe how Cray, StackHPC and the HBP co-designed a next-generation storage system based on Ceph, exploiting complex memory hierarchies and enabling next-generation mixed workload execution. We will describe the challenges, show performance data and detail the ways that a similar storage setup may be used in HPC systems of the future.”

Adrian Tate is the EMEA Research Lab Director at Cray. Currently Director of Cray’s EMEA Research Lab. Lead of several research projects and a team of Research Engineers. Previously Principal Engineer in Cray’s CTO office specialising in Innovation Projects and (earlier) Technical Lead of Cray’s scientific libraries team.

Stig Telfer is CTO of StackHPC. Stig has a background in R&D working for various prominent technology companies, particularly in HPC and software-defined networking. Stig is now CTO for StackHPC, a consultancy specialising in the convergence of cloud, HPC and big data. Stig is also co-chair of the OpenStack Scientific Working Group, a globally-distributed grouping of research institutions using OpenStack for research computing use cases.

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