Register Now for April 12-13 Workshop on Improving Data Management for Bioinformatics


Registration is now open for a workshop on “Improving Data Mobility & Management for International Bioinformatics” to be held April 12-13 at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley, Calif. The workshop is the latest in a series called CrossConnects, run by by ESnet, the Department of Energy’s Energy Sciences Network. This workshop is co-sponsored by Indiana University.

Bioinformatics data sets are reaching into the petabyte scale, a trend that will only continue if not accelerate, and many bioinformaticists and data managers already struggle with data mobility and workflow especially as the need for real-time analysis increases. The data is often produced at supercomputing centers and sequencing centers like DOE’s Joint Genomics Institute, then transferred to other research labs and universities for analysis and further study.

In addition to two keynote talks by bioinformaticists, Larry Smarr, the founding director of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology, a UC San Diego/UC Irvine partnership, and professor in computer science and engineering at UC San Diego, will give a talk on the key role that scientific networks, including the Pacific Research Platform, play in bioinformatics. Read the draft agenda.

The workshop aims to bring together leaders in the bioinformatics, computing, and networking communities to discuss the resources, partners, and tools needed to support high performance data transfers, distributed data analysis and global collaboration in precision medicine, precision agriculture and their relevant ties to human and plant microbiomic and metagenomic research.

For more information, click here.
To register, click here.

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ESnet Will Miss Ciena’s Jim Archuleta

The entire ESnet team was saddened to learn about the unexpected passing of Jim Archuleta of Ciena. We’ve lost a good colleague and a true friend and extend our deepest sympathy to Jim’s family and co-workers.

Operating a successful network like ESnet makes us reliant on our vendors like Ciena and it’s important that we establish good working relationships with them – it’s the way we do business. But it was different with Jim. Jim was not just a vendor rep but a true partner and collaborator. Through our work together with Jim, we’ve been able to transform the network resources available to scientists around the world.

Jim knew his stuff, he knew what we needed and he knew how to work with our unique community. He even stepped up as a running partner on occasion.  Our community has lost a valued contributor and we will truly miss him.

Here is Jim’s obituary from the Dallas Morning News on Jan. 21, 2016.

James Gerald “Jim” Archuleta, Jr. passed away Saturday, Jan. 16, 2016, in Fort Worth. Service: 1:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 22, in Greenwood Chapel, with a reception immediately following in the Greenwood Live Oak Room. Memorials: In lieu of flowers a donation may be made to the Trinity Valley School Endowment Fund; 7500 Dutch Branch Rd., Fort Worth, Texas 76132. Jim was born Oct. 30, 1966 in Denver, Colo. He graduated from SMU with an Electrical Engineering degree in 1990, and later earned his MBA from SMU in 1996. Since 1991 he has worked for Ciena Communications, a networking and fiber-optic company based in Maryland. While working for Ciena he relocated to Fort Worth, Texas in 2013 in order to be closer to family and friends. Jim brought joy and laughter to all who had the privilege to know him and will be missed greatly. Jim was preceded in death by his brother, William “Bill” Archuleta. Survivors: Wife, Caroline; daughter, Sydney; son, Nate; parents, Evelyn and James G. Archuleta Sr.

ESnet, CENIC Announce Joint Cybersecurity Initiative

The Department of Energy’s Energy Sciences Network, or ESnet, and the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC) have announced a partnership in developing cybersecurity strategy and research.

Sean Peisert of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Computational Research Division will be director of the new CENIC/ESnet Joint Cybersecurity Initiative. Peisert, who was also recently named as the chief cybersecurity strategist for CENIC, is a noted security expert who has worked extensively in computer security research and development.

Although the defense of information systems and networks is critical for all modern enterprises, scientific research organizations like ESnet and CENIC face particular challenges: support of open science and, increasingly, big-data science; diverse research portfolios; openness to experimentation across intellectual domains; openness to collaborations within and across institutions – regionally, nationally and internationally; and the need for seamless access to remote data sources, scientific tools and computing resources.

Read the full story.

Kate Petersen Mace Brings Extensive Experience to ESnet’s Science Engagement Team

Kate Petersen Mace, who most recently served as director of External Partnership Management at Clemson University, is the newest member of ESnet’s Science Engagement Team.

In addition to her work at Clemson, Mace also served as chair of SCinet at the SC14 conference. The position was a two-year volunteer commitment to manage a diverse team of more than 100 network engineers from around the world to design and deploy a network to make the conference the best-connected site on Earth – for a week, until it’s all taken down.

“One of the most important qualifications Kate brings to the position is the breadth of her experience,” said Lauren Rotman, leader of the Science Engagement Team. “She has earned the respect of the technical community through her frontline experience in engineering and administering networks, including network architecture design and deployment. Kate has also proven herself to be an effective collaborator, forming partnerships and serving as an advocate for new technology in the community.”

Read the full story.

Kate P. Mace, center in gray, led the SCinet team at SC14 in New Orleans.

Greg Bell talks with HPCwire about running the fastest science network

Intrigued by the growing role of networking as an instrument of discovery, Tiffany Trader of the online newsletter HPCwire recently interviewed ESnet Director Greg Bell about what it takes to operate DOE’s international network.

GRBell headshot
ESnet Director Greg Bell

In the article, Greg talks about the range of expertise ESnet’s staff brings to the table —  “the network engineers on call 24-7, a cybersecurity team, storage experts, data collection and data analysis activities, and efforts engaged in building out the network.  There is a team of people who build software tools to help the network be less of a black box. Then there is another team focused just on science engagement, helping scientists make the best possible use of the network and raising expectations about the network capabilities.”

“We are trying to raise everyone’s expectations and let them know that networks can do much more than they could just a few years ago. In fact, the great vision that we have for networks is not only as a scientific instrument in their own right, but that they can glue together big scientific instruments like a particle accelerator or a light source and a computational facility, for example, a DOE supercomputer center. This enables a scenario where we can take data in real-time from the source and move it at high-speed over the network and process it in real-time at the supercomputer center so the scientists can get immediate feedback about the experimental parameters that they have chosen and then adjust them in real-time.”

Read the full article.


ESnet staff help mentor WINS participants at SC15

In addition to being connected to the world at 1.6 terabits per second, the recent SC15 conference in Austin provided powerful networking opportunities for five up-and-coming women network experts through the NSF-supported Women in IT Networking at SC (WINS) program. The program is aimed at training and mentoring women faculty and staff from institutions across the country by having them participate in SCinet, the ultra-high bandwidth network created each year to support SC.

Jason Zurawski, a member of ESnet’s Science Engagement Team and longtime SCinet member, mentored  WINS participants Sana Bellamine from CENIC and Megan Sorensen from Idaho State University.  Nick Boraglio of ESnet’s Network Engineering Team worked with Debbie Fligor from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign as members of the SCinet Routing Team.

Read the NSF blog about WINS.

Find Out What’s New, What’s Cool at ESnet at SC15

Find Out What’s New, What’s Cool at ESnet at SC15

ESnet staff will be presenting talks and demos at the SC15 conference being held Nov. 15-20 in Austin. Here’s a quick look at some of your opportunities to find out what’s new with the Energy Sciences Network:

Tuesday, Nov. 17
ESnet Chief Technologist Inder Monga will hold a demo on “ESnet’s Network Operating System: An SDN Platform to Handle Big Science” from 10-11 a.m. in the DOE booth 502.

Jon Dugan of the Tools Team will host a demo on ESnet’s Network Visualization Tools from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m., followed by a roundtable discussion. Both will be in the DOE booth #502.

Wednesday, Nov. 18
ESnet Chief Technologist Inder Monga hosts a mini-panel presenting “The Future of DOE Networking: A Tasting Menu” served up at 1:45 p.m. in the DOE booth #502.

Monga will give a demo on “ESnet’s Network Operating System: An SDN Platform to Handle Big Science” from 4-5 p.m. in the DOE booth 502.

ESnet’s Inder Monga and Eric Pouyoul will demonstrate “Software-Defined Networking” in the Corsa Technology booth# 364. Corsa and ESnet will be demonstrating ENOS (ESnet Network Operating System) running on the 100G SDN ESnet Testbed. ENOS includes all components that are needed for automating complex network provisioning and optimization and it will control the Corsa SDN switch in real-time. The demo will be offered from 7 – 9 p.m. Monday, Nov. 16, 10:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. and 4:30-5:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, Nov. 17 – 18, and 10:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 19.

Attending SC15? Get a Close-up Look at Virtualized Science DMZs as a Service

Attending SC15? Get a Close-up Look at Virtualized Science DMZs as a Service

ESnet, NERSC and RENCI are pooling their expertise to demonstrate “Virtualized Science SMZs as a Service”  at the SC15 conference being held Nov. 15-20 in Austin. They will be giving the demos at 2:30-3:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday and 1:30-2:30 p.m. Thursday in the RENCI booth #181.

Here’s the background: Many campuses are installing ScienceDMZs to support efficient large-scale scientific data transfers. There’s a need to create custom configurations of ScienceDMZs for different groups on campus. Network function virtualization (NFV) combined with compute and storage virtualization enables a multi-tenant approach to deploying virtual ScienceDMZs. It makes it possible for campus IT or NREN organizations to quickly deploy well-tuned ScienceDMZ instances targeted at a particular collaboration or project. This demo shows a prototype implementation of ScienceDMZ-as-a-Service using ExoGENI racks (ExoGENI is part of NSF GENI federation of testbeds) deployed at StarLight facility in Chicago and at NERSC.

The virtual ScienceDMZs deployed on-demand in these racks use the SPOT software suite developed at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory to connect to a data source at Argonne National Lab and a compute cluster at NERSC to provide seamless end-to-end high-speed data transfers of data acquired from Argonne’s Advanced Photon Source (APS) to be processed at NERSC. The ExoGENI racks dynamically instantiate necessary compute virtual resources for ScienceDMZ functions and connect to each other on-demand using ESnet’s OSCARS and Internet2’s AL2S system.

ESnet’s Nick Buraglio Leading SCinet’s First SDN Effort at SC15

For the first time, SCinet, the research and production network for the SC conference series, will be using software defined networking (SDN) to manage and simplify the operations for a portion of the SC15 conference’s show floor network.  Nick Buraglio of the ESnet Network Engineering Group is leading the project.

SCinet is the research and production network that serves as the data communications backbone for the annual SC conference. By using SDN, the network engineers deploying SCinet will be able to transfer the task of configuring individual network switching devices to a single piece of software, removing human error from the process of setting up connections within the network.

“Take the last three problems or errors that have occurred on a network of any notable size,” says  Buraglio, “and it’s almost always a configuration problem—some kind of human error that caused those issues.” Deploying SDN will simplify managing these network connections and will hopefully reduce the time engineers spend troubleshooting configuration and provisioning errors.

ESnet’s Nick Buraglio

Read more. 

ESnet Staff to Host Hands-on perfSONAR Workshop at Grace Hopper Conference

Esnet’s Sowmya Balasubramanian and Mary Hester will present a workshop on “Exploring an Open-Source Software on Miniature Computers” at the 2015 Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing to be held Oct. 14 – 16 in Houston, Texas. Balasubramanian is a software developer for the Advanced Network Technologies Group at ESnet and Hester is a member of ESnet’s Science Engagement Team.

The Oct. 15 workshop attendees will explore the free, open-source software perfSONAR (Performance focused Service Oriented Network monitoring Architecture). Co-developed by ESnet, perfSONAR is a network monitoring and measurement tool to help network and IT staff understand and visualize packet loss and throughput problems on network connections through active testing and publishing of the data. The workshop will simulate a world-wide network of servers to troubleshoot and explore networking on small single-board computers.

perfsonar_piMmmmm…raspberry pi — just the thing for
serving up a workshop on using small computers
for network performance measurement.