CentOS Migration Transforms Inefficient Research Cluster to a High Efficiency, Trustworthy Cluster with Expert Support from CIQ

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The Challenge

UM had an old operating system based on CentOS that had not been maintained. Nodes were constantly failing without anyone knowing, there was no monitoring, nothing was set up correctly, and the 100 users on the cluster began to dwindle due to the poor performance. Tired of running jobs that drained cluster resources, people stopped using it and set up their own servers. It wasn’t until professionals came from other Universities operating functional clusters that the UM team learned that it could improve operational performance.

It was time for a centralized, efficient cluster. The team adopted a mission to train faculty and staff to use and manage this resource, but the salary for a System Administrator in research computing in Missoula couldn’t compete with other higher education institutions. It was decided that research computing would be outsourced. UM reached the rank of an R1 institution, and their goal is to have their research computing enterprise reflect that prestigious status.

CentOS Migration - Case Study