I. Foster, R. Kettimuthu, S. Martin, S. Tuecke, D. Milroy, B. Palen, T. Hauser, J. Braden, "Campus Bridging Made Easy via Globus Services," Preprint ANL/MCS-P3001-0612, June 2012. [pdf]
As science becomes more computation and data intensive, computing needs often exceed campus capacity. Thus we see a desire to scale from the local environment to other campuses, to national cyberinfrastructure providers such as XSEDE, and/or to cloud providers-in other words, to "bridge" to the wider world. But given the realities of limited resources, time, and expertise, campus bridging methods must be exceedingly easy to use: as easy, for example, as are Netflix and Amazon movie streaming services. We report here on experiences with a service called Globus Online, which seeks to do for campus bridging what Netflix and Amazon do for movies: that is, use powerful cloudhosted services and simple, intuitive web interfaces to make it "so easy that your grandparent can do it." Specifically, we describe Globus Transfer, which addresses the important campus bridging use case of moving or synchronizing data across institutional boundaries. We describe how Globus Transfer achieves both ease of use for researchers and ease of administration for campus IT staff. We provide technical details on the Globus solution; quantitative data on usage by more than 25 early adopter campuses; and experience reports from two early adopters, the University of Michigan and the University of Colorado Boulder.