Technical Paper
Leveraging OpenStack and Ceph for a Controlled-Access Data Cloud
Event Type
Technical Paper
Facilitation Tags
Technical Paper Tags
Technical Paper
TimeWednesday, July 254:45pm - 5pm
DescriptionWhile traditional HPC has and continues to satisfy most worklows, a new generation of researchers has emerged looking for sophisticated, scalable, on-demand, and self-service control of compute infrastructure in a cloud-like environment. Many also seek safe harbors to operate on or store sensitive and/or controlled-access data in a high capacity environment.

To cater to these modern users, the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute designed and deployed Stratus, a locally-hosted cloud environment powered by the OpenStack platform, and backed by Ceph storage. The subscription-based service complements existing HPC systems by satisfying the following unmet needs of our users: a) on-demand availability of compute resources; b) long-running jobs (i.e., > 30 days); c) container-based computing with Docker; and d) adequate security controls to comply with controlled-access data requirements.

This document provides an in-depth look at the design of Stratus with respect to security and compliance with the NIH’s controlled-access data policy. Emphasis is placed on lessons learned while integrating OpenStack and Ceph features into a so-called “walled garden”, and how those technologies influenced the security design. Many features of Stratus, including tiered secure storage with the introduction of a controlled-access data “cache”, fault-tolerant live-migrations, and fully integrated two-factor authentication, depend on recent OpenStack and Ceph features.