MSI Users Bulletin - March 2017

The Users Bulletin provides a summary of new policies, procedures, and events of interest to MSI users. It is published quarterly.

To request technical assistance with your MSI account, please contact

1. New Storage Limits: As announced in an email from Director of Research Computing Claudia Neuhauser on February 21, 2017, MSI is revamping our storage policies. From the email:

An increasing number of users require very large storage allocations, which has put pressure on our Primary (and most expensive) storage option. To control costs, we will be implementing limits on free allocations: 20 TB on Primary storage per group and 10 TB per user on Second Tier storage. PIs will still be required to justify storage requests and provide more details for larger allocation requests. If you are currently over these new limits, MSI staff will contact you over the next month to navigate our new solutions and tools for managing data storage workflows with the goal of reducing your overall storage needs. Starting July 1, 2017, groups that exceed the free allocation will be charged according to our published rates. The University of Minnesota Informatics Institute (UMII) will offer bridge funding in the form of short-term storage grants (through the Updraft grant competition) to facilitate the transition to this charge model.

MSI is also evaluating some new storage options and our newly hired User Engagement Developer will be creating tools, metrics, and interfaces that will help users manage storage. We anticipate new tools and storage options to be available over the next several months. In the meantime, please contact if you’d like to work with one of our staff to most effectively utilize MSI storage options.

2. New Globus Tier 2 Endpoint: MSI now has a Globus endpoint on the MSI Second Tier storage system. This allows MSI users to transfer data to and from MSI Second Tier storage.

This is an MSI Beta service. Please note that the Globus software supporting Ceph transfers is also in beta.

Information about using the Globus transfer to Second Tier storage can be found in the MSI FAQ section: How do I use Globus to transfer data to Second Tier Storage at MSI?

3. 2017 MSI Research Exhibition: MSI’s annual Research Exhibition will be held on April 25, 2017, in Walter Library. The event includes a judged poster session with prizes (travel awards) awarded to the finalists. The two Grand Prize winners will receive awards of $2,000 and the four Finalists will receive awards of $1,000 (NOTE: amounts are subject to change). There is still time for MSI users to submit posters to participate in the competition. Please see the MSI website for complete information on how to submit a poster. Proposals are due on March 22; PDFs of the posters, for judging, will be due April 5.

4. Spring Tutorials: The Spring tutorial schedule is posted in the Events section of the MSI website.

5. Modeling in Solid State Chemistry With CRYSTAL: In conjunction with several other organizations, MSI is sponsoring a workshop that will teach users about using the computational tool CRYSTAL. The workshop will be held July 9-14, 2017 in Minneapolis. Registration is currently open. More information and links can be found in the Events section of the MSI website: Minnesota Workshop on ab Initio Modeling in Solid State Chemistry With CRYSTAL

6. Job at MSI:

High Performance Computing Geospatial Analyst

7. Useful Webpages: Looking for help with using MSI? One of these pages may have the information you need:

a. Services available at MSI

b. Getting Started (includes Quickstart Guides)

c. MSI Systems

d. Help and Documentation

e. Staff Listing and Areas of Expertise

f. Upcoming Events and Tutorials

g. Proposal Support