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Globus Online Goes European

posted 20 Sep 2012, 00:24 by Matthias Hofmann   [ updated 20 Sep 2012, 00:44 ]

Globus Online, the Software-as-a-Service for research data management, has launched a new web site – www.globusonline.eu – to serve the European research community. The announcement was made at the GlobusEUROPE conference, co-located at the European Grid Infrastructure’s (EGI) Technical Forum 2012 in Prague, Czech Republic.

European scientists can now use the Globus Online service to move large-scale data reliably, using a service specifically designed for them. This is the latest step in a multi-year effort led by the IGE to enable researchers within the EU to make use of the tools provided by Globus alongside the European Grid Infrastructure’s (EGI) services. “I’m delighted that IGE have chosen to launch this new service during our Technical Forum” says Steven Newhouse, EGI Director. “Our partnership with IGE and Globus Online is important for the future of the infrastructure and helps us support a wider range of researchers.”

Globus Online is a popular, fast, secure and easy-to-use file transfer service that was recently recognised by R&D Magazine as one of the 100 most technologically significant products introduced in the past year . Globus Online currently has over 6,000 registered users who have used the service to transfer over 500 million files, close to 7 petabytes, to date. Globusonline.eu is a pan-Atlantic project with the Globus team at the Computation Institute – a joint initiative between the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory – leading the development effort, and collaborating with both EGI and IGE to better address the specific requirements of researchers in the EU.

Globus Online moves data directly between source and destination systems without the need for the data to pass through an intermediate server. Servers in the U.S. monitor the transfers, automatically recover from common network and server failures and optimize the endpoints so that transfers are completed as quickly and efficiently as possible. Another benefit of this approach is that the transfer is secure, since Globus Online acts only as a control mechanism and does not view the content of the files being transferred.

“European data stays in Europe, just as U.S. data stays in the U.S.”, says Dr. Helmut Heller, project director of IGE. “We do make it clear that we store some basic information about these transfers on our servers in the U.S., but ask for the researchers' consent first,” adds Steve Tuecke, co-Principal Investigator for Globus Online. “Our goal is to work more closely with the European community in order to understand their needs and demonstrate the value a hosted service delivers to their research workflows.”

Globus Online evolved from the Globus Toolkit, an open-source suite of applications for building computing grids. The Globus Toolkit is widely used around the world and IGE is working to increase its use in Europe and to improve interoperability with other high-performance computing software used by sites in EGI. “We are proud to provide this new service which further expands the support we already offer the European research community,” says Steve Tuecke. “With the ongoing support of IGE and EGI, we plan to use the file transfer service as a foundation to deliver additional data management capabilities, currently under development, to EU researchers.”

About the European Grid Infrastructure (EGI)

The European Grid Infrastructure (EGI) is a federation of resource providers set up to deliver sustainable, integrated and secure computing services to European researchers and their international partners.  EGI.eu is an organisation established in February 2010 to coordinate and manage the infrastructure (EGI) on behalf of its participants: National Grid Initiatives (NGIs) and European Intergovernmental Research Organisations (EIROs).  EGI-InSPIRE (EGI-Integrated Sustainable Pan-European Infrastructure for Research in Europe) is a four-year project involving 50 partners in over 40 countries. The project is co-funded by the European Commission's 7th Framework Programme (contract number: RI-261323) to help lay down the EGI operational and support processes, as well as to build a sustainable e-Infrastructure, independent from project cycles. By the time EGI-InSPIRE finishes in 2014, EGI will be a sustainable and dependable provider of computing resources for European scientists and researchers.

About Globus Online

Globus Online is a fast, reliable file transfer service that simplifies the process of secure data movement. Recommended by HPC Centers and user communities of all kinds, Globus Online is a free service that automates the mundane (but error prone and time consuming) activity of managing file transfers, whether between computing facilities or from a facility to your local machine. Globus Online is an initiative by the Computation Institute at the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory, and is supported in part by funding from the Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation, and the National Institutes of Health. To get started or find out more, visit http://www.globusonline.org/.

About the Initiative for Globus in Europe

The Initiative for Globus in Europe, IGE, is a comprehensive service and technology provider for European e-infrastructures. It is focused on the development, customisation, provisioning, support, and maintenance of components of the Globus Toolkit and Globus Online, in close collaboration with the European Grid Initiative (EGI), Distributed Computing Infrastructure (DCI) projects, and Standard Development Organisations (SDOs). IGE is co-funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Program under grant number RI-261560. For more information: www.ige-project.eu and www.egcf.eu.