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Half way there – GridPP on target
December 23rd, 2006

GridPP had reached more than 5,000 CPU – half way to the total it will need for processing data from the Large Hadron Collider. It has also passed a 1/4 Petabyte of storage. Read more…

Sticking the Grid together
December 21st, 2006

A defining feature of a Grid is that its components can change from minute to minute, as storage, processors and even whole sites join and leave, jobs start and finish and files are written and deleted. Resources can also vary widely, from disk to tape storage, different
operating systems and processor types. But for the Grid to work, the status and makeup of each of these contributions needs to be known, so that resources can be allocated to users, sites monitored and accounting data collected. For many of the world’s scientific Grids, this problem is solved by the Grid Laboratory Uniform Environment – or GLUE schema. Read more…

I come from a land Down Under
December 21st, 2006

Setting up an Australian Grid site with help from GridPP. Marco La Rosa from the University of Melbourne visited the UK earlier this year, touring Tier 1 and Tier 2 sites at RAL, Oxford, Imperial, Glasgow and Edinburgh. He has now set up Australia’s first LCG/EGEE site, running mainly ATLAS and biomedical jobs. Read more…

PPARC Wants Business To Step Into The (g)Lite
December 7th, 2006

Almost two dozen people met in central London this week to discuss the commercial opportunities for the gLite middleware used by GridPP. Bringing together members of the business and scientific Grid community it was a great opportunity to enable knowledge transfer and help support entrepreneurship. Read more…

A Year is a Long Time on the Grid
December 5th, 2006

Dave Newbold is a lecturer in the High Energy Physics Group at the University of Bristol. He was Chair of the GridPP User Board for the year until September. Here, Dave looks back at the high and lows of his time as Chair, how things have changed and what remains to be done. Read more…

Thoughts from Tampa: GridPP at Supercomputing '06
November 29th, 2006

GridPP made its annual trip to Supercomputing earlier this month. This year’s conference was held in Tampa, Florida, where Dave Colling, Gidon Moont and Roger Jones presented the Real Time Monitor on the UK e-Science stand. Below, they tell us about why they went, whether they were asked any good questions and why GridPP had the best give-aways. Read more…

AstroGrid: accessing the whole universe from the comfort of your PC
November 28th, 2006

The universe is a big place, and studying it is a big challenge. To help create universal access to observations from around the globe PPARC funds GridPP’s sister project, Astrogrid. Formed at the same time as GridPP, AstroGrid is now a leading member of the international astronomy community. Read more…

Science Grid This Week gets a face lift and GridPP gets (l)inked
November 17th, 2006

Weekly online newsletter Science Grid This Week (SGTW) has been reorganised and relaunched this week at SuperComputing ’06 as International Science Grid This Week (iSGTW). GridPP features in the inaugural issue with our Grid Acronym Soup (GAS) as Link Of The Week. Read more…

Grid computing 'Mappa mundi' unveiled in Florida
November 16th, 2006

Visitors to Supercomputing 2006 in Tampa, Florida this week have been the first to see a new interactive map that shows nine of the world’s largest computing Grids. The map, developed by Gidon Moont from GridPP and Laurence Field from EGEE (Enabling Grids for E-sciencE), uses Google Earth to pinpoint Grid sites on six continents, showing more than 300 sites overall. Like the medieval ‘mappa mundi’, which showed what was known of the world at the time, this is one of the first attempts to show the whole scientific Grid world.
Read more…

GridPP, and winter, visit Edinburgh
November 12th, 2006

As winter eventually reached the UK, GridPP17, GridPP’s third and final collaboration meeting of 2006, was held recently in the National eScience Centre in Edinburgh. Read more…

ScotGrid Eight get together again
November 10th, 2006

The eight proposers of a Scottish Grid Service met in Glasgow this week to discuss the way forward with funding organisations. The collaboration aims to let all researchers requiring computing resources connect into a large-scale distributed system at each of the partner sites: Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow (lead), Heriot-Watt, St. Andrews, Stirling and Strathclyde. The meeting also saw the official opening of Glasgow’s new computing cluster. Read more…

Janet Grows Up
November 2nd, 2006

JANET (the Joint Academic NETwork) has begun the roll out of its newest incarnation known as SuperJanet5 (SJ5). GridPP is built on JANET – these improvements in our underlying infrastructure will be vital once we start to deal with the petabytes of data from the LHC. Read more…

Glasgow's New Cluster Commissioned
November 1st, 2006

Less then two weeks after ClusterVision’s final delivery of hardware at Glasgow, the new computing cluster has been certified as a production quality Grid site. Read more…

EGEE collects 200 sites
October 27th, 2006

The EGEE Grid this week reached 200 sites, spread across nearly 50 countries. According to the gstat monitoring tool (http://goc.grid.sinica.edu.tw/gstat/), 201 sites are now certified on the production Grid – 21 of which are in the UK. Overall, EGEE currently has around 30,000 CPUs at its certified sites. Read more…

GridPP helps drive prize winning Dashboard system
October 17th, 2006

A monitoring system which uses GridPP resources is being used to help improve the Grid. It also impressed judges at the EGEE’06 conference in Geneva and went away with a €500 prize for best application of Grid technology. Read more…

GridPP's European excursion
October 9th, 2006

Enabling Grids for EsciencE (EGEE) met in Geneva recently for the project’s third annual conference. GridPP was in attendance with delegates, speakers and a stand in the exhibition space. Read more…

UK helps EGEE hit a million jobs a month
October 6th, 2006

EGEE (Enabling Grids for E-sciencE) has announced a major milestone, with its Grid handling over a million jobs each month for the last six months. UK sites played a key role, running around a fifth of all the jobs this year. As well as particle physicists, scientists submitting jobs range from biochemists simulating drugs for malaria to geophysicists analysing oil and gas fields. Read more…

GridPP's Real Time Monitor steps into the 3rd dimension
September 29th, 2006

The Real Time Monitor has been given a makeover, with a 3D upgrade developed by GridPP’s Gidon Moont, based at Imperial College London. The new monitor was launched at last week’s All Hands Meeting in Nottingham, and this week at EGEE’06 in Geneva. It is now available for download from http://gridportal.hep.ph.ic.ac.uk/rtm/ Read more…

Robin (and others) return to Nottingham
September 25th, 2006

GridPP returned to Nottingham last week, for the fifth annual UK e-Science Programme All Hands Meeting (AHM). As in previous years GridPP shared the PPARC stand with its sister project AstroGrid and again debuted a new look Real Time Monitor. Read more…

Students speak OpenLab
September 7th, 2006

This summer GridPP funded, with CERN, students taking part in the Openlab Summer Student scheme. We have been able to get them to tell us about their work and experiences living in CERN for the summer. Read more…

LHCb analyses Grid efficiency
August 30th, 2006

New work from Glasgow has shed light on the efficiency of the Grid for physics analysis, highlighting the progress made and work still to be done before the LHC switches on. Stuart Paterson, a PhD student, looked at the experience of LHCb physicists submitting jobs to the Grid, both before and during LHCb’s latest data challenge (DC06). Job completion efficiencies of 95% for analysis jobs have been measured from two different studies using statistics accumulated before DC06 commenced. However, examining the performance over a six month period, including the recent DC06 activity when production work and analysis jobs are running together, the picture became more complex and the efficiency could drop to around 70%. Read more…

PPARC announce dates for GridPP3 assessment
August 25th, 2006

PPARC have announced dates for considering the GridPP3 bid. The first discussion of the bid by the Projects Peer Review Panel (PPRP) will be on 6 September. This will include an hour’s open session from 10am, with a presentation on GridPP3 and Q&A, followed by a closed session in the afternoon. Read more…

CMS transfers top a petabyte a month for the last three months
August 14th, 2006

In the last 91 days CMS has successfully moved 3.3 petabytes of data around the world as part of ongoing tests of the Grid. The majority of the work was tied into the Service Challenge 4 disk-to-disk transfers, with CMS’s test of the Tier-0/Tier-1 disk-to-disk rates accounting for the rest. Read more…

First among equals: UK tops list of EGEE CPU hours
August 11th, 2006

The UK has come out top in the listing of CPU hours contributed to EGEEII since the project’s start. In the four months to the end of July, the UKI region contributed more than 5 million normalised CPU hours. Tony Doyle, GridPP project leader, commented, “This is an excellent milestone for the UK, showing how much effort has gone into establishing and maintaining the GridPP grid. Of the UKI hours, more than a third each went to ATLAS and LHCb, demonstrating how the UK particle physics Grid is being used extensively to prepare for the LHC”. Read more…

gLite at the end of the tunnel
August 1st, 2006

As of the end of July, all 21 certified UK EGEE sites have now installed gLite3.0. 14 sites have also completed the incremental upgrade to gLite 3.0.1. In EGEE overall, 105 sites are reported as at gLite3.0. Read more…

Enterprising OpenLab
July 28th, 2006

On July 26th CERN hosted an OpenLab workshop on Grid and entrepreneurship. Lectures and case studies on the day gave an overview of what is involved in spinning-off technology in general and specifically in the context of computing Grids. Read more…

The ABC of grant writing – GridPP submits proposal for 3rd phase
July 14th, 2006

Yesterday GridPP submitted its proposal for a UK Grid for LHC Exploitation, supporting all particle physics research. Submitted in response to PPARC’s call of April, the GridPP3 proposal is for £35.2m over 3 and a half years. The full proposal, consisting of a main document and 10 appendices, is at http://www.gridpp.ac.uk/docs/gridpp3. It will be assessed by PPARC’s Project Peer-Review Panel, starting in September. Read more…

Queen Mary hosts GridPP16
July 4th, 2006

During the current stretch of fine weather, the GridPP collaboration visited London for its most recent conference, GridPP16. Queen Mary, University of London, in the East End, was the host for the five days of the meeting. Read more…

Change at the top – new Project Leader announced for GridPP3
June 26th, 2006

GridPP have announced that Dave Britton will be the Project Leader for GridPP3. Dave will take over in April 2008, when GridPP3 is scheduled to start. Below, Dave tells us why he agreed to take the job, that he doesn’t like quarterly reports and why one of his favourite songs is for toddlers. Read more…

Cambridge undergraduates run LHCb analysis on the Grid
June 9th, 2006

Five undergraduates at the University of Cambridge have been among the pioneers in LHCb analysis on the Grid. As part of their final-year studies for an MSci in Physics, the students have undertaken projects to evaluate LHCb sensitivities. Over a two-month period of intensive analysis work, the students processed a total of more than 70 million simulated B decays (equivalent to about 5 Tbyte of data), seeing jobs run on all LCG Tier-1 centres, and with a success rate of around 95%. Read more…

The Grid, flying high with industry and the KITE Club.
June 1st, 2006

Representatives from GridPP, EGEE and the National Grid Service met members of the business community recently to discuss how the Grid might provide solutions to some of the problems facing industry. The meeting was held at St Johns Innovation Centre in Cambridge, and Tony Doyle, the GridPP project leader, presented GridPP’s work and our plans for industrial liaison. Read more…

Kidderminster school wins Grid competition
May 31st, 2006

King Charles I School, Kidderminster have won a GridPP-sponsored competition run by the particle physics group at the University of Birmingham. The competition encouraged AS-level students from eight West Midlands schools to learn about particle physics and the Grid and cascade the exciting work in these fields to younger pupils in their own and other schools. Read more…

RAL upgrades to gLite-3.0
May 31st, 2006

The UK Tier-1 at RAL has become among the first sites worldwide to upgrade to gLite-3.0. Read more…

GridPP takes its turn in EGEE user support
May 15th, 2006

Like the presidency of the EU, user support for EGEE rotates round the regions. GridPP has recently done its first two weekly shifts as Ticket Process Manager (TPM), responsible for dealing with queries from EGEE users worldwide. Read more…

GridPP helps fight avian flu
May 5th, 2006

During April, computers at eleven GridPP sites put in one hundred thousand hours of time searching for possible drug components against avian flu, as part of a data challenge run by EGEE (Enabling Grids for E-sciencE). The UK has been the lead country in providing resources to the challenge so far, running nearly a quarter of all jobs. Read more…

EGEE Enters A New Era
May 5th, 2006

EGEE, Enabling Grids for E-sciencE, entered its second phase in April. This very successful project has been providing an international Grid computing infrastructure since 2004 and will continue to do so for at least another two years, commencing on April 1st. As for the first phase, it is being coordinated by CERN and co-funded by the European Commission and national funding agencies through partner institutes. Read more…

SAMGrid helps D0 find B flavour oscillation
April 26th, 2006

B mesons have the unusual property of spontaneously transforming into their own antiparticle and back again. Work by the D0 collaboration, using analysis on SAMGrid, has found limits on the frequency of this oscillation for the Bs meson. The research analysed a large sample of decays corresponding to 1fb-1 of integrated luminosity collected by the D0 experiment during run II of the Tevatron at Fermilab. SAMGrid allowed the huge volumes of data to be analysed quickly, so the result could be reached earlier than would have been possible using conventional computing models. Read more…

PPARC calls for next phase of particle physics computing
April 19th, 2006

PPARC have now released a call to fund the next round of Grid computing for particle physics. GridPP will be co-ordinating responses to the call, which has a closing date of 13 July. PPARC anticipates that the new funding will cover 1 September 2007 to 31 March 2011. Read more…

GridPP at the IoP HEPP Conference, Warwick
April 18th, 2006

GridPP was in Warwick last week as the county’s high energy physicists came together to discuss issues facing the community and to present new research. With members of the collaboration attending, speaking and chairing conference discussions, GridPP also held a stand to promote the project to the wider HEPP community. Read more…

Tier1 and Tier2s test sustained 1Gb/s transfers
March 29th, 2006

GridPP has successfully tested data transfers between its UK Tier-2s and the UK Tier-1 centre at RAL. A data transfer rate of 900Mb/s was sustained for 90 hours – that’s equivalent to transferring the whole of the Lord of the Rings film trilogy on DVD every 3 minutes, and doing that for almost 4 days. Tier 2 data centres are a key part of Worldwide LCG’s strategy for analysing the huge volumes of data from the Large Hadron Collider. Read more…

UK signs Worldwide LHC Computing Grid MoU
March 27th, 2006

The UK’s participation in the Wordwide LHC Computing Grid (WLCG) was strengthened on 17 March when PPARC signed the Memorandum of Understanding with CERN. PPARC’s signature commits the UK Tier-1 at RAL and the four UK Tier-2s to provide services and resources to the WLCG. The document was signed by Richard Wade, PPARC’s representative on the LHC Computing Resources Review Board. Deborah Miller, PPARC’s e-Science Programme Manager, commented that, “The exploitation of the LHC is one of PPARC’s highest scientific priorities and the signing of the LCG MoU marks an important
step in this project” Read more…

What do Grid users really want? The first EGEE User Forum
March 22nd, 2006

The first ever EGEE (Enabling Grids for E-sciencE) User Forum took place at CERN from the 1st to the 3rd of March. This event brought together users, developers and those responsible for EGEE grid deployment and operations. The objectives were not only for users to meet, make new contacts and share experiences within the community, but also to set new targets for the future, especially for the evolution of current applications. Applications communities represented included life sciences, Earth observation, metrology, computational chemistry, fusion, astroparticle and particle physics. Read more…

GridPP: Getting Pegasus Off The Ground
March 13th, 2006

GridPP has received a lot of interest in the past for what it’s doing, but a new research project is also interested in how GridPP itself operates. Read more…

A passage to India: GridPP at CHEP06
February 27th, 2006

Nearly twenty members of GridPP made the trip to India earlier this month for CHEP06, the conference on Computing in High Energy and Nuclear Physics. Hosted by the TATA Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), the conference saw a visit from the President of India and plenary talks including Tony Hey on e-Science and cyberinfrastructure, Jamie Shiers on the LHC computing infrastructure and Dr. Ashok Jhunjhunwala on low cost connectivity in India. Read more…

Around The World At 1 Gigabyte A Second
February 16th, 2006

GridPP members from RAL, taking part in the latest LCH service challenge, have helped move data around the world at a Gigabyte a second. The success was announced yesterday by the Worldwide LHC Computing Grid collaboration at this years’ international CHEP conference in Mumbai. Read more…

Birmingham Leads The Way With GridPP Schools Competition
February 6th, 2006

Last Thursday, GridPP members from Birmingham University brought together schools from the West Midlands to present them with a test of their physics knowledge and their skills as communicators. The meeting was the introductory session of a competition in which the school students are being challenged to present the ideas behind the Grid, the LHC and its experiments to as many people as possible. The winning school will be given five hundred pounds from PPARC to help fund a trip to CERN to see the facilities and be given a tour by a member of Birmingham’s group working at CERN. The competition is being part-funded by GridPP, as part of its Dissemination Grants Scheme. Read more…

Report from GridPP15 at CCLRC – Rutherford Appleton Laboratory
January 16th, 2006

The first GridPP Collaboration meeting of 2006 took place on the 11th and 12th January at the CCLRC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in Oxfordshire and was attended by over 70 members. Read more…