wiki:computing/BioCluster2

IRCF BioCluster2

Summary

The IRCF BioCluster2 is a specialzed cluster designed to support computational biology. It is configured to facilitate large-scale genome and transcriptome assemblies, metagenomics and other high-throughput analyses of large biological data sets.

Availability of the BioCluster2

As with the original BioCluster, there is a free tier so that any MU person can use the BioCluster2. However, the privileges associated with the free tier of the BioCluster2 are fewer than were available in the original BioCluster. For example, the free tier allows the simultaneous use of up to 4 processor cores plus 24GB of total RAM in the cluster and 200GB of space for files. These resources are inadequate for many data processing pipelines. Free tier users who need more resources have at least three alternatives here at MU:

  1. Pay to use the IRCF BioCluster2 (see below)
  2. Purchase hardware to install in the IRCF BioCluster2
  3. Use the Lewis cluster, which has a dedicated BioPartition with nodes designed to support computational biology (ie, multiprocessor/multithreaded, 512GB of RAM and local scratch drives). The Lewis cluster is a free resource for MU faculty, staff & students.

BioCluster2 User Tiers

More extensive usage of the BioCluster2 is available through user fees. User fees are organized into tiers:

Tier 1: Simultaneous usage of up to 10 processor threads, 100GB of RAM and 500GB of space for files. The cost for Tier 1 is $50 per month with a minimum allotment of 1 month. For example, T1 users can run 10 simultaneous jobs on the BioCluster2 as long as the total RAM request does not exceed 100GB.

Tier 2: Simultaneous usage of up to 25 processor threads, 250GB of RAM and 1TB of space for files. The cost for Tier 2 is $100 per month with a minimum allotment of 1 month. For example, T2 users can run 25 simultaneous jobs on the BioCluster2 as long as the total RAM request does not exceed 250GB.

Tier 3: Simultaneous usage of up to 50 processor threads, 500GB of RAM and 2TB of space for files. The cost for Tier 3 is $200 per month with a minimum allotment of 1 month. For example, T3 users can run 50 simultaneous jobs on the BioCluster2 as long as the total RAM request does not exceed 500GB.

Another way to facilitate more advanced privileges in the BioCluster2 is through hardware investment. Purchasing hardware is typically a larger single expenditure, but investors and users in investor groups are not charged ongoing usage fees. Investors and investor groups are granted privileges that are proportional to their investment. For example, if an investor purchases a 28/56(HT)-core processor node with 512GB of RAM (which currently costs ~$15,000), s/he will can submit up to 56 jobs in the BioCluster2 as long as the total RAM request does not exceed 512GB. Similarly, an investor can use all the storage space s/he purchases. Investor hardware is maintained for its reasonable lifetime and there is a nominal annual management fee.

We hope that the combination of free usage tiers on the IRCF BioCluster2 and the Lewis cluster Biopartition, as well as the pay-for-use tiers of the IRCF BioCluster2, will facilitate the wide variety of computational biology research occurring at MU. Please let me know if you have any questions.

More Information

Not that the IRCF reserves the option to change the configuration of the BioCluster2 to facilitate a project, clear a bottleneck or solve a problem. These changes may occur without notice. We will, however, attempt to maintain the functionality of the BioCluster2 as much as possible.

Last modified 7 months ago Last modified on Jan 4, 2019 4:39:57 PM