When it comes to collaboration, the Initiative for Globus in Europe (IGE) project is certainly no stranger to firsts. Back in January this year, IGE was the first to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the European Grid Infrastructure (EGI) project. Building on this landmark achievement ,it has now become the first project to sign a Service Level Agreement (SLA) with EGI as well.
The SLA was signed in Amsterdam on 7 April, 2011 by Helmut Heller, the project director of IGE and Steven Newhouse, director of EGI.eu on behalf of EGI. This achievement, appropriately perhaps, occurred during a meeting of the EGI Technical Coordination Board, where EGI and its Technology Providers meet regularly to discuss the next steps in delivering community-focused solutions to the European Grid research community.
Following the signing of the MoU, the establishment of an SLA between these two projects was the next successful step in this collaboration. It represents a strong commitment between the two projects to support European Globus users and to deliver European-focused Globus components from IGE as part of the EGI Unified Middleware Distribution (UMD). Through the agreed mechanisms in this well-defined collaborative framework, IGE can focus on delivering the features European Globus users want to see.
Heller summarises: "After the MoU in January, this is the second big step to better support Globus users in Europe and it is also formalising our lively collaboration with EGI. The next step will be the first release of the EGI-bundled Globus software for the European users." Steven Newhouse adds: "SLAs are key within the EGI Ecosystem to develop a strong business-like relationship with our external technology providers and guarantee the best service and support to our user community."
The IGE project is a strong believer in close community collaboration. Within the first six months of the project, it has signed two other MoUs; one with EUIndiaGrid2 last December and one with the ERINA+ project in February, with other MoUs in the pipeline. IGE is also very keen to engage with European researchers who have Globus requirements and who develop using Globus.
In March, it launched a community-oriented Request Tracker for the registration, tracking and uptake of these requirements within IGE. In May, the first European Globus Community Forum (EGCF) meeting was organised, attracting Globus enthusiasts from all over Europe. Currently, IGE is organising the GlobusEUROPE conference which will bring together a range of users from Globus communities across Europe, along with the lead Globus PI from the US and the team from the IGE. This will give attendees the valuable opportunity to network with top Globus experts, to hear about the latest Globus Toolkit release, GT5.2, news and future plans and to leverage on the expert user stories from a wide range of areas not available elsewhere. For more information, see: http://www.globuseurope.org/