Research Computing

The University of Sydney provides access to various research computing services and we help connect researchers to external resources.

Computing resources (at the University and elsewhere) come in different shapes and types, we hope to simplify your access and get your workloads onto the most suitable service. For more information and to discuss your need please contact us.

University of Sydney Resources

All University of Sydney resources are available to Sydney researchers free of charge. The use of the SIH services including the Artemis HPC and associated support and training warrants acknowledgement in any publications, conference proceedings or posters describing work facilitated by these services. The continued acknowledgment of the use of SIH facilities ensures the sustainability of our services. See some suggested ackonledgments and the terms of use below.

Artemis High Performance Computing - Artemis HPC

Our in-house HPC offering with 7000+ CPUs, TBs of RAM, PBs of storage interfacing options, 100s of NVIDIA GPUs, InfiniBand networking. Find out more about the Artemis service, including hardware specifications, in the Artemis Online User Guide. To get accesst to Artmeis you simply need to fill out a Research Data Management Plan and request HPC access.

Virtual Machines - VM

You can get access to a small dedicated computing environment for various research and research support needs. See the help page for more info

Argus Virtual Research Desktops - Argus VRD

The Virtual Research Desktops deliver on-demand interactive high-performance computing resources. It is designed for graphical processing and visualisation with a graphical user interface. Contact us for information on how to gain access to a machine, and for detailed information see the Argus user guide

Research Data Storage

The University offer secure storage for all your research data (currently pushing over 10 PB). To get access simply fill out a Research Data Management Plan and request RDS access.

Training Workshops

Training on the use of these platforms and more are covered by our regular workshops hosted at the university.

Additional USyd computing platforms and services

We work closely with ICT to provide additional tools, platforms, and services to help support and optimise your research experience. These include eNotebooks, REDCap, Office365, DropBox, GitHub, Matlab, CLC Genomics, IPA and we are adding more tools and software for researchers all the time. For a details about many of theses services see here and consult the ICT Knowledge Base.

National Partners

NCI

Australia’s National Computational Infrastructure (NCI) facility is free for academic and research users, and provide computing complementary services for your research. Access to NCI is generally through a merit based application once a year, applications at NCMAS.

NCI facilities:

  • HPC (Raijin)
  • GPU computing (Raijin)
  • Cloud computing (Tenjin)
  • Remote Visualisation (Massive)
  • Data Storage

Pawsey

The Pawsey Supercomputing Facility is free for academic research users. Access is gained via NCMAS and additional shares can be obtained time through various access schemes.

Pawsey facilities:

  • HPC (Magnus, Galaxy)
  • Cloud computing (Nimbus)
  • Remote Visualisation (Zeus)
  • Data Storage

NeCTAR

The NeCTAR research cloud is free for users with AAF (i.e. your unikey) for a limited trial period. At any time you can apply for more resources.

Nectar facilities:

  • Cloud computing
  • Virtual Labs

Intersect

Intersect offers several avenues for access to computing facilities and services. A mix of paid, merit, and free services for Usyd researchers. See there website for more details.

Intersect facilities:

Cloudstor

Cloudstor is formed on the backbone of AARNET in Australia, providing fast and secure connections between research institutes. It can be used to share data with external people also. Free for users with AAF (i.e. your unikey).

Cloudstor facilities:

  • Data Storage and transfer

Corporate research computing and public cloud options

The University has collaborations and affiliations with many retail computing services. Most services offer some free-tier level of compute. Many are looking for research workloads to test their facilities, and you can always purchase additional time and resources, to scale rapidly for your needs. Some common providers we can assist you with are:

Glossary

HPC - High Performance Computing. This term generally describes computational tasks that can’t be run on your local laptop/desktop. Computing jobs may be long running, use many cpus, require high amounts of RAM, have excessive reading/writing of files, and use large amounts of data storage (TerraBytes), and are run without interacting with the program instead are run via “batch” processing. The terms HTC (high throughput computing), supercomputing, parallel computing, mainframe computing, are specific parts of HPC.

Cloud Computing The cloud typically refers to any compute done in a remote location, with interfacing from your local laptop/desktop via the internet. Clouds do in fact have some physical location, normally located in various datacenters around the world that are filled with computers which make up the cloud. When you connect to the cloud, you are using one (or many) of these computers. The benefit of this is that you have dedicated hardware maintained by someone else. Cloud computing is good for workflows that may grow and shrink in size throughout your research workflow, then you only need to allocate computational resources (add/remove RAM/storage/CPUs/GPUs) as you require them. You can also install bespoke software, pipelines, and operating systems with administrator privileges.

Virtual Machine A virtual machine is normally a shared part of a computer hosted in the cloud. These are good for hosting things like web sites, where you need 247 availability but the work is usually not too computational intensive. These are one part of cloud computing. You can also have a virtual machine on your own local machine where you need to isolate specific versions of software and use specific custom operating systems.

Acknowledgements

The use of the SIH services including the Artemis HPC and associated support and training warrants acknowledgement in any publications, conference proceedings or posters describing work facilitated by these services. The continued acknowledgment of the use of SIH facilities ensures the sustainability of our services. Some suggested acknowledgements are:

We have made use of the research computing services offered by the Sydney Informatics Hub at the University of Sydney.

The authors acknowledge the facilities, and the scientific and technical assistance of the Sydney Informatics Hub at the University of Sydney and, in particular, access to the high performance computing facility Artemis.

The authors acknowledge the Sydney Informatics Hub and the University of Sydney’s high performance computing cluster Artemis for providing the high performance computing resources that have contributed to the research results reported within this paper.

Artemis Terms of Use

Please carefully read Artemis HPC Terms of Use before you use Artemis. In using and continuing to use the HPC Service, you agree to be bound by these Terms. If you do not accept these Terms, you should stop using the HPC Service.