Sponsored By
Efika 5200B Project
EFIKA based Grid

in category Other
proposed by bvr on 10th October 2006 (accepted on 18th October 2006)
Project Summary
The idea of this project is to use several EFIKA boards as nodes to build Grid network and develop Grid services with Globus Toolkit 4 framework. Grid network is used for sharing various resources (i.ex. cpu time, storage capacity). Because EFIKA has small size and power consumption it could be a good alternative for custom modules made for Grid-Oriented Storage project, which is developed at Cranfield University.

Project Blog Entries

  EFIKA based Grid
posted by bvr on 16th November 2006

Grid Computing
The Grid computing is a cutting-edge technology intensively explored in scientific and research environments. Ian Foster who is denoted as a ‘the father’ of the Grid computing in his paper “The Anatomy of the Grid: Enabling Scalable Virtual Organizations” described grid as coordinated resource sharing and problem solving in dynamic, multi-institutional virtual organization. Resource sharing in grid computing is very wide conception. As resource sharing we can consider sharing computational power, storage capacity, sensors or dedicated equipment.

Globus Toolkit
Globus Toolkit is one of frameworks used for building grid infrastructure. Globus Toolkit implements OGSI (Open Grid Service Infrastructure) specification and has been deployed in several successful grid projects (i.e. TeraGrid in US, National Grid Service in UK)

Grid Oriented Storage
Nowadays there is a growing demand for storage capacity from various reasons i.e.

  • Simulation data – complex simulations require large capacities for storing simulation results- i.e sensor data form wind tunnel
  • Data warehousing and data mining – large databases of multidimensional data – i.e. transactions data gathered daily form national wide shops network
  • Data backup and recovery – i.e. backup of databases in financial sector

Grid Oriented Storage is a project developed at Cranfield University by prof. Frank Wang et al. The project is sponsored by EPSRC. Its aim is to fulfill demands mentioned above by providing Gird based file system. Because GOS file system is a single image file system physically distributed data is visible as file system. An unique feature of this project is a custom hardware GOS module with RAID disc array and DiskOnModule which contains operating system and Globus software.

Efika Grid
My idea is inspired by GOS described above. I would like to build a Efika based Grid and develop simple GOS. It could be alternative for custom hardware nodes as using an off-the-shelf component has obvious advantages of low price and high availability. My goal would be to check practical efficiency of proposed solution.

Efika would be used as a data node running Linux and Globus. By using PCI RAID controller an disks array could be set up increasing node’s storage capacity.
Project goals

  • Use several Efika boards (preferably 3) to build a grid network.
  • Deploy Linux and Globus Toolkit on Efika based Grid
  • Develop basic Grid services and check Efika Grid efficiency
  • Build simple grid oriented storage infrastructure.

As I'm currently doing a MSc from Grid Computing at Cranfield University I hope to use Efika Grid to develop my final thesis project.
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