Pricing for Extra Storage #

Research groups can purchase additional storage on Wynton beyond the user-specific storage that is free to all.

Summary #

Lab-Specific HPC Storage Pricing Model #

We are currently offering the ability for research labs to purchase additional storage at a one-time charge of $160/TB for RAID 6 equivalent storage (or $320/TB for mirrored RAID 6). In contrast to /wynton/home, purchased storage will be mounted on /wynton/group, /wynton/protected/group, or /wynton/protected/project and dedicated to the lab that bought it – no oversubscription will occur. The purchased storage will have similar performance to the rest of the BeeGFS infrastructure (e.g. /wynton/scratch, /wynton/protected/scratch, /wynton/home, and /wynton/protected/home).

Please note, storage in /wynton/group/, /wynton/protected/group, and /wynton/protected/project count towards a lab’s storage quota total.

Given prices of hard drives, the stated rate might seem high, but there are three mitigating factors. First, we have enabled ZFS compression, so the actual available space might be significantly more. Second, the price includes the cost of the networking, metadata servers, storage server, maintenance, and administration. Third, we have proven that the performance of our BeeGFS infrastructure is much higher than the typical NFS server (in some respects, the performance is more than an order of magnitude faster). In the future, if absolutely necessary, we may also charge a “maintenance fee” for storage after the initial 5-year hardware warranty expires, but nothing has been decided as of yet. Similarly, any future storage purchases may be priced differently than that described here, to reflect the situation present at that time.

There are some additional parameters:

Frequently Asked Questions #

Q: If I already have purchased group storage, can I also use that storage quota for PHI data in /wynton/protected/group? #

A: Yes, but PHI data must not be stored in /wynton/group. We can create group folders for you under /wynton/protected for PHI data storage and collaboration. If you choose to have your current storage allocation updated to include PHI storage, you have three options:

  1. We can create a group folder in both /wynton/group and /wynton/protected/group. Both folders will share the same quota. In this case, the same quota will be applied to two folders, so it can be tricky to track where the group’s quota usage is, PHI or non-PHI.

  2. We can create a group folder in /wynton/group and a folder with a separate sub-quota subtracted from the group quota in /wynton/protected/group, for example, /wynton/protected/group/group-phi. This makes it easier to track separate PHI and non-PHI group quota usage.

  3. If the group using the PHI data does not include the whole lab group membership, or includes members from outside of the group, then a folder in /wynton/protected/project can be created and the child quota subtracted from the parent group.

Only members of the lab group with Wynton PHI access will be able to access files stored under /wynton/protected.

Q: Does purchasing additional group storage increase the quotas available to lab users in /wynton/home or /wynton/protected/home? #

A: No, the home directory quotas are managed separately from group quotas and additional purchased group space cannot be applied to home directories.

Background #

We have an immediate need to provide for Wynton HPC storage expansion to meet the demands of various research groups on campus. Given the difficulty of predicting longer-term costs and issues, the current pricing is considered short-term and may change as we understand the evolving needs and operational realities of Wynton HPC. Thus, this pricing model will be re-evaluated at the beginning of the next fiscal year (July 1, 2019). This model is based on some assumptions that are important to understand:

Last updated: May 22, 2023