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At IU, what research computing services are available?

UITS Research Technologies maintains an advanced scholarly and artistic cyberinfrastructure designed to improve productivity and enable new possibilities in research computing, providing IU researchers and students access to robust, reliable computation and storage systems, advanced media and interactive visualization technologies, scientific, analytical, and bioinformatics software, and support and consultation services to enable the effective use of IU cyberinfrastructure. Many of the technology services Research Technologies provides are formally aligned with the federal Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). See What services does IU provide for researchers working with ePHI data?

Important: Although UITS HIPAA-aligned resources are managed using standards meeting or exceeding those established for managing institutional data at IU, and are approved by the IU Office of the Vice President and General Counsel (OVPGC) for storing research-related ePHI, they are not recognized by the IU Committee of Data Stewards as appropriate for storing other types of institutional data classified as "Critical" that are not ePHI research data. To determine which services are appropriate for storing sensitive institutional data, including ePHI research data, see Which IU services are approved for storing ePHI or other types of sensitive institutional data?

The Committee of Data Stewards and the University Information Policy Office (UIPO) define official classification levels and management standards for institutional data in accordance with IU's Management of Institutional Data (DM-01) policy:

On this page:


High-performance computational and storage systems

IU researchers have access to world-class supercomputers and data storage systems; for more, see:

To request an account on an Indiana University research system, use the Account Management Service (AMS); see At IU, if I already have some computing accounts, how do I get others? Account availability depends on your eligibility. For eligibility information, see the "Research system accounts (all campuses)" section in What computing accounts are available at IU, and for whom?

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Visualization and analysis systems and services

The Visualization and Analytics area of Research Technologies provides systems, software, and services that help IU researchers extract knowledge from their data through a variety of visualization techniques, quantitative analysis methods, and community-oriented workflows. Visualization and Analytics also provides advanced media and interactive visualization technologies that enable IU students, educators, and artists express their creative visions. For more, see:

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Scientific, statistical, mathematical, bioinformatics, advanced multimedia, and interactive visualization software

IU students, faculty, and staff have access to a wide variety of scientific, statistical, mathematical, bioinformatics, advanced multimedia, and interactive visualization applications to support their research. Most applications are available on either the research supercomputers or the Advanced Visualization Lab (AVL) systems. Additionally, some scientific, mathematical, and statistical applications are available on the computers in the Student Technology Centers (STCs), or via IUware and IUanyWare. For more, see:

If you have questions about compilers, programming, scientific/numerical libraries, or debuggers on IU's research systems, request help or information from the Scientific Applications and Performance Tuning team. For help installing or working with genome analysis applications on Mason, email NCGAS.

If you have questions about using statistical and mathematical software at Indiana University, email UITS Research Analytics (formerly known as the Stat/Math Center). Research Analytics is located on the IU Bloomington campus at Woodburn Hall 200, and is open for consultation by appointment Monday-Friday 9am-5pm. For more, visit Research Analytics on the web, or call 812-855-4724 (IUB) or 317-278-4740 (IUPUI).

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Data collections and open source software

Additionally, Pervasive Technology Institute (PTI) Research Centers, along with PTI Service and Cyberinfrastructure Centers, provide numerous digital data collections and online services, and distribute open source applications, all of which enable scientific research at IU and throughout the US; for more, see:

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Online tools

Research Technologies provides several online tools designed to help IU researchers effectively collaborate with each other while effectively using the IU cyberinfrastructure to achieve their scientific goals:

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Condominium and cloud computing

Condominium computing

Research Technologies condominium computing services are designed to allow IU departments to offload the work of managing, securing, and backing up their departmental research IT systems and system components.

If you or your IU sub-unit have money available to use for a computing cluster, you always have the option of buying and operating your own cluster, as well as managing it, backing it up, and securing it against hackers. Alternatively, you can purchase nodes that are compatible with IU's Quarry cluster, have them installed in the very secure IUB Data Center, have them available when you want to use them, and have them managed, backed up, and secured by UITS Research Technologies staff. With this option, you get access to your nodes within seconds of requesting their use. Additionally, when they are not in use, they become available to others in the IU community, thereby expanding the computing capability available to the IU community while conserving natural resources and energy. Since any piece of computing equipment has a relatively short useful life (about four years), and it takes considerable energy and a variety of metals to make a computer node, the least environmental impact is achieved by using computing equipment to its absolute maximum capability. Because of the benefits to the IU community, UITS generally hosts condominium computing nodes without charging maintenance or operations fees.

If you are interested in hosting computational nodes within Quarry in a condominium computing approach, contact Research Technologies.

Cloud computing

Through Indiana University's partnership with Penguin Computing, members of the US higher education community (including IU faculty, staff, and departments) can purchase on-demand computational and storage services through the Penguin-On-Demand (POD) "Cluster as a Service" offering. The POD service provides the convenience and flexibility of other cloud computing providers, with two important differences:

  • The POD service employs a real high-performance supercomputer cluster, not virtual machines.

  • Because the POD system (Rockhopper) is physically located inside the IU Data Center, researchers can be assured their data are securely stored and maintained.

For more, see Rockhopper at Indiana University and Can I purchase cloud computing services at IU?

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Support and consultation services

Note: Consulting services and computing cycles are offered to students, faculty, and staff as baseline services through university funding without any direct charge. However, some services (such as requests to maintain personal/departmental workstations and software for such workstations) may be on a charge-back basis. See Research Technologies (RT) Chargeback Services Policy for details. Consulting services for an extended period of time (over 20 hours) require a signed agreement between the researcher and UITS. For more, see "Guidelines for and terms of Research Technologies extended consulting services" in RT Policy on Prioritization of Work.

Software consulting

IU researchers can receive short- and long-term support and consulting to help them effectively use scientific software and other innovative information technologies that advance scholarship in basic and biomedical life sciences, and genome analysis. For more, see:

HIPAA security consulting

The UITS Advanced Biomedical IT Core (ABITC) provides consulting and online help for Indiana University researchers who need help securely processing, storing, and sharing ePHI research data. If you need help or have questions about managing HIPAA-regulated data at IU, contact the ABITC. For additional details about HIPAA compliance at IU, see HIPAA & ABITC and the Office of Vice President and General Counsel (OVPGC) HIPAA Privacy & Security page.

System support

System-specific support is also available from Research Technologies. Use the corresponding links below to request help with or information about the following systems:

Systems How to get help
Big Red II
Mason
Quarry
Research Database Complex (RDC)
Rockhopper
Contact the High Performance Systems team
Scholarly Data Archive (SDA)
Research File System (RFS)
Contact the Research Storage team
Visualization and Collaborative Theater
Ultra-High Resolution Display Wall
IQ-Wall
Virtual Reality Theater
Contact the Advanced Visualization Lab
Data Capacitor, Data Capacitor II, and DCWAN Contact the High Performance File Systems team

News, training, and more information

For news on research computing services available at IU, see the Research Technologies News page. For training opportunities, see Cyberinfrastructure Training and InfoShares. For more see, Where can I get help using IU's supercomputers?

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Last modified on April 02, 2014.

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