The MPCDF HPC Cloud provides access to computing and storage resources. The service is not offered to individual users but is intended for projects or working groups of Max Planck Institutes.
The fees for the requested resources consist of three components: investment, infrastructure and support. The fees for the investment are based on the cost of purchasing the respective hardware, the fees for infrastructure are mainly based on the averaged costs for the consumption of electricity and cooling of the systems. Support costs cover the personnel required to deploy and operate the systems and are calculated in a degressive way based on the size of the requested resources. For each specific resource, a total monthly price is calculated considering the three cost components. The prices detail in the above quote are valid for the calendar year 2023. Prices for 2024 will be published once they become available.
Cost estimates for cloud resources can be found at the following MPG internal site. HPC Cloud Price Lists:
Setup procedure and billing procedure
When a project is production ready, the requested resources are to be ordered and their availability confirmed. Once an agreement is reached the resources will be allocated to the project via standard technical means such as quotas, host aggregates, disk pools, etc, and mapped to a set of physical resources by MPCDF. Projects are required to order a minimum set of physical resources and are required to run for a minimum duration, usually six months. Adjustments of the size of the resources are possible, however, such adjustments should be requested at least 3 months in advance. Cancellations or extensions of projects must be communicated at least six weeks in advance.
Billing will take place shortly after the end of a project or after a configuration change. Additionally, for projects which span several years, billing will take place close to the end of each calendar year, planned for November. Although quotes are provided based on a monthly average the actual billing will be performed on the exact number of days during the billing period. In rare cases where the above described mechanisms are not sufficient, a special solution can be discussed and realized in collaboration with MPCDF. Special pricing may apply.
A brief description of the resources available for renting follows. This list provides an indication of the available resource types, however, the exact technical solution for a project is to be discussed on a project by project basis to allow for an optimal solution.
As of 2023, there are two types of computing hardware resources:
Standard compute node
High-memory compute node
The compute resource which is best suited for the request will be evaluated together with MPCDF.
In some special cases directly attached storage is available either as SATA SSD or as NVMe SSD. Furthermore, GPUs, either of type A30 or of type A100, are available on request. Note: The use of GPUs requires negotiation and also implies a mandatory amount of provisioned vCPUs.
The following types of storage resources are available:
Block storage based on HDD or SSD
Nexus mass storage, either as RAID6-POSIX or S3 object storage. The latter is implemented either with erasure coding or replication.