Introduction

UCloud is a digital research environment built to support the needs of researchers for both computing and data management throughout the data life cycle. It serves as a data storage, where the users can store their data in compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It provides an interface that improves the high-performance computing (HPC) environment usability and the access to applications and software regardless of users' location and devices.

UCloud is designed to be user-friendly with an intuitive graphical user interface (GUI), flexible and extensible to account for the multi-scale and multi-disciplinary research challenges, and the high data intensity and heterogeneity.

The focus of UCloud is to make complex digital technology accessible to all users.

A brief summary of UCloud solution and services is listed below. For the technical details of each component we refer to the UCloud Technical Documentation.

Storage

The UCloud data storage service is designed for ​durability,​ ​resiliency and ​security.​ The service is flexible in order to adapt to the ​large volume and variety of research data and it supports different storage architectures.

Data Management

UCloud integrates a ​scalable metadata service which can be used to ​automate common data management tasks​, such as backups, data ingestion, preprocessing and archiving.

Sharing

The UCloud sharing service allows users to ​collaborate on datasets by making folders available to all the members of a team. Different levels of permissions can be given to the users in a team.

Compute

The UCloud compute service is flexible and supports many different workflows, from ​interactive computing,​ to traditional batch ​high-performance computing​, or ​data analytics and visualization​, as well as cloud-like services such as web-based dashboard. Anything from simple one-page applications to complex setups can be built.

Applications

UCloud offers an apps service where users can browse or search for their favorite applications. ​Simple or complex applications can be deployed with a few clicks via an intuitive user interface, which does not require any training in IT or Computer Science. New apps can be easily added on demand.

Indexing

Metadata, file data, application data, and user activity are indexed in a scalable service to allow for ​fast, near real-time search across all files and metadata in the system.

Security

Security is built into apps, services and infrastructure with authentication, encryption, network security and monitoring tools. Users can use multifactor authentication to access the services from anywhere via the graphical user interface. A formal ISO27k certification process has started in Spring 2019 and will be completed in 2020.

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