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GRIDS Center Newsletter

October 2004

The following news about distributed computing is from the Grid Research, Integration, Deployment and Support Center (GRIDS), part of the National Science Foundation Middleware Initiative (NMI). Subscribe to the GRIDS Center Newsletter by sending e-mail to with "subscribe news" in the body of the message.

See our archive of previous newsletters.


What Can GRIDS Center Do for You?
In order to provide direct services to cyberinfrastructure application projects, the GRIDS Center develops core competencies, or "service offerings," that can be appropriately employed in specific projects. We draw on these services to support engagements with specific cyberinfrastructure deployment projects and offer general service to the broader Grid community.

How Did GRIDS Center Contribute to the Success of NEESgrid?
NEESgrid, the pioneering cyberinfrastructure that connects earthquake engineering researchers throughout the USA and the world, was launched officially in October 2004. Read about the role of the NMI components in NEESgrid in "NEESgrid and NMI: A Case Study" (PDF) (HTML).

Available Only at

Installation of GRIDS Center Software Suite R5.1
The GRIDS Center provides installation instructions for GRIDS Center Software Suite R5.1 to assist those who wish to configure a grid system and want a single point of reference for the required configuration process.

Using SimpleCA in GRIDS Center Software Suite R5.1
A security certificate is the one basic thing that is needed to run any grid service. The Globus Toolkit provides a mechanism for creating certificates. The certificate authority (CA) that Globus provides is called SimpleCA. SimpleCA is sufficient for most basic grid services.


Standardizing the Grid: Evolution and Convergence (Includes WSRF)
Introduces the Web Services Resource Framework (WSRF), a proposed new set of specifications allow Grid sources to be shared via Web service-based environments. (Reprinted from ClusterWorld.)

Globus XIO
Describes the Globus eXtensible Input Output system, which is useful for Grid applications that require high-performance I/O or for access to a variety of storage systems or cluster applications. (Reprinted from ClusterWorld.)

Testing in a Grid Environment
Presents guidelines for establishing a successful Grid test suite, with special focus on the challenges raised by distributed sites without centralized control. (Reprinted from ClusterWorld.)

Grid Packaging Software
Examines fundamental tools for packaging and higher-level utilities that can simplify the deployment of Grid software. (Reprinted from ClusterWorld.)

New Start Services Table
A page has recently been added to the NMI site that provides an easy guide to server services and how to start them, including information about logins and ports.

Presentations and Tutorials

The GRIDS Center routinely posts materials from our presentations and tutorials given at various events around the world. We also include links to a number of other useful documents and sources of information related to grid technologies. These materials are available online at:

News from Around the Grid

Sun Microsystems, TACC Add Supercomputer to TeraGrid
The Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) at the University of Texas and Sun Microsystems, Inc. announced that Maverick, a new UltraSPARC-based supercomputer with 3-D visualization capability, would go live on the National Science Foundation's TeraGrid to provide compute power, storage resources and visualization to researchers, scientists and engineers across the country.

Utility Computing Among Trends to Affect SMBs in 2005
A study of trends likely to impact small-to-medium-sized businesses (SMB) next year, conducted by the Information Technology Solution Providers Alliance (ITSPA), includes utility computing (i.e., paying as you go for computing services) as an appealing model for SMBs, which is expected to grow in popularity in the coming year. SMBs can save money by paying for applications and hardware on an as-needed basis. With utility computing, companies would no longer have to purchase and maintain costly equipment or pay to update aging software. While the technology is not perfect, it is continuing to evolve. The model is ideal for SMBs that could save money by only spending on the technology they are currently using. This model would also ensure that SMBs could always get the latest technology.

NSF Awards $4M for Ocean Observatories Grid
The National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded $3.9 million over four years to the University of Washington (UW), the University of California at San Diego (UCSD), and partner institutions, including the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), to build the Laboratory for the Ocean Observatory Knowledge Integration Grid (LOOKING). The grant is the largest of nearly 120 awards from the agency's Information Technology Research (ITR) program this year. Participating institutions will collaborate on experimental wireless, optical networks and grid technology, including development of web services, networking protocols, devices, and sensors. The prototype grid will eventually link communities of oceanographers via high-speed wireless and optical networks to observatories off the coasts of Mexico, the United States, and Canada.

External Conferences, Workshops,
Events, and Calls for Papers

Call for Posters: GlobusWORLD
GlobusWORLD 2005 is currently accepting proposals for poster presentations describing original work in any area that involves the research, development, and application of Globus Toolkit–based Grids. The deadline for submission is November 1, 2004. GlobusWORLD will be held February 7–11, 2005, in Boston, MA.

Call for Papers: European Grid Conference
EGC2005 will focus on all aspects of Grid computing in Europe and will bring together participants from research and industry. It will take place February 14–16, 2005, in Science Park, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. The deadline for paper submission is November 1, 2004.

Call for Papers: The Journal of Grid Computing
The Journal of Grid Computing solicits high-quality technical articles on any aspect of Grid computing and related topics. Please visit their Web site or contact the editors at and

GGF 13 to Be Held in Seoul, South Korea
The Global Grid Forum (GGF) 13 will be held March 14–17 in Seoul, South Korea. The GGF is a community-initiated forum of thousands of persons from industry and research leading the global standardization effort for grid computing. GGF's primary objectives are to promote and support the development, deployment, and implementation of Grid technologies and applications via the creation and documentation of "best practices"—technical specifications, user experiences, and implementation guidelines. Check the Web site for information about registration and participation deadlines.

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