SIGHPC Systems Professionals


Monday, July 29, 2019

8:30am to noon

Chicago, IL

Held in conjunction with

PEARC19 Logo

 Quick Information

In order to meet the demands of high-performance computing (HPC) researchers, large-scale computational and storage machines require many staff members who design, install, and maintain these systems. These HPC systems professionals include system engineers, system administrators, network administrators, storage administrators and operations staff who face problems that are unique to high performance computing systems. While many conferences exist for the HPC field and the system administration field, none exist that focus on the needs of HPC systems professionals. Support resources can be difficult to find to help with the issues encountered in this specialized field. Often times, systems staff turn to the community as a support resource and opportunities to strengthen and grow those relationships are highly beneficial.

This Symposium is designed to share solutions to common problems, provide a platform to discuss upcoming technologies, and to present state of the practice techniques so that HPC centers will get a better return on their investment, increase performance and reliability of systems, and researchers will be more productive. Additionally, this Symposium is affiliated with the systems professionals' chapter of the ACM SIGHPC (SIGHPC SYSPROS Virtual ACM Chapter). This session would serve as an opportunity for chapter members to meet face-to-face, discuss the chapter's yearly workshop held at SC, and continue building our community's shared knowledge base. For more information, check out our upcoming activities.

 Invited Speakers

The following speakers will be presenting:

  • Deploying and Managing an OnDemand Instance: Open OnDemand is an NSF-funded open-source HPC portal based on OSC's original OnDemand portal. The goal of Open OnDemand is to provide an easy way for system administrators to provide web access to their HPC resources. This talk will cover how OnDemand is deployed and managed at the Ohio Supercomputer Center, including the infrastructure supporting OnDemand such as networking, storage and interactions with HPC systems. Presented by Doug Johnson, OSC's Chief Systems Architect, and Trey Dockendorf, an HPC Systems Engineer at OSC.
  • Best Practices for Writing an RFP for the Acquisition of HPC Equipment: Writing a request for proposal (RFP) for the purchase of high performance computing equipment is a challenging task. It’s a process with many moving parts, and often there are few resources to help. Templates, if they do exist, are meant for simple equipment purchases rather than multi-component supercomputers. Advanced Clustering Technologies has seen a lot of RFPs in its 18+ years of operation. When written well, RFPs result in strong vendor responses and a smooth purchasing process. When written poorly, RFPs can result in delays, missed opportunities and, worst of all, the pain of a rebid process to address RFP shortcomings and get the desired responses. ACT will share some insights and offer guidance for best practices for the RFP process. Presented by Kyle Sheumaker, ACT President and CTO.
  • Building and Operating Jetstream: Jetstream, led by the Indiana University Pervasive Technology Institute (PTI), adds cloud-based, on-demand computing and data analysis resources to the national cyberinfrastructure. Jetstream entails interactive virtual machines, secure data movement, virtual desktops, and reproducible data analysis tools. This talk will cover how Jetstream was deployed and how it is currently supported including networking, storage, and computing details. Presented by John Michael Lowe, a Senior Cloud Engineer at Indiana University.
Archived Presentations


We will have a panel on HPC Cybersecurity. The panel will include:

  • Ti Leggett, Deputy Project Director & Deputy Director of Operations, Argonne National Laboratory
  • Cyrus Proctor, Research Associate in the HPC Performance & Architectures Group, Texas Advanced Computing Center
  • Von Welch, Director of the Center for Applied Cybersecurity Research, Indiana University


8:30-8:35amOpening remarksJenett Tillotson, SIGHPC SYSPROS President
8:35-9:00amDeploying and Managing an OnDemand InstanceDoug Johnson and Trey Dockendorf, Ohio Supercomputing Center
9:05-9:30amBest Practices for Writing an RFP for the Acquisition of HPC EquipmentKyle Sheumaker, Advanced Clustering Technologies
9:35-10:00amBuilding and Operating JetstreamJohn Michael Lowe, Indiana University
10:30-11:30amPanel: HPC CybersecurityTi Leggett, Argonne National Lab; Cyrus Proctor, Texas Advanced Computing Center; Von Welch, Center for Applied Cybersecurity, Indiana University
11:30-noonOpen Discussion

 Organizing Committee

John BlaasUniversity of Colorado Boulder
David CliftonAnsys
Stephen FralichBoeing
Stephen Lien HarrellPurdue University
Adam HoughUniversity of Washington
William ScullinArgonne
Jenett TillotsonNCAR

 Contact Information

If you need to contact us, send email to SIGHPC SYSPROS.