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University of Texas at El Paso adds new cluster with aid from Campus Bridging

XSEDE and UTEP staff worked together to bring up a total of 70 compute nodes.

The XCBC software, along with consulting services offered by XSEDE Campus Bridging staff, enabled UTEP Computer Science to take a room full of donated hardware that wasn't running and turn it into a single cluster accessible to its students, faculty, and staff. In addition to being useful in teaching CS students the basics of cluster computing, the XCBC software stack allows for a wide variety of exposure to open-source software solutions being used in advanced scientific research every day, which will be an asset to those students who choose to move on to graduate school and work in a lab setting. Because the machines that make up the cluster were donated or reclaimed and the software and consulting are provided on an ongoing basis at no cost to UTEP, only minimal costs will be associated with upkeep moving forward.

As a result of the May 2016 visit to UTEP, Campus Bridging staff members Eric Coulter and Barbara Hallock were able to assist UTEP staff in bringing up the largest XSEDE-Compatible Basic Cluster (XCBC) that has been built so far. During the site visit, XSEDE and UTEP staff worked together to bring up a total of 70 compute nodes, with over 30 additional nodes being added after the visit, for a total of 103 nodes in this cluster, which is comprised entirely of machines that were donated and/or sitting unused at the start of the visit. Named Orion, the new cluster will be maintained by the UTEP CS department.

Caption: UTEP Computer Science Systems and Technology Support installing cluster software with guidance from Eric Coulter