Hardware Investing Policy


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The Pitt CRC provides a computing hardware investment opportunity for research to further enable the work of the broader Pitt community and their own research groups. We maintain a separate category of CRC Faculty users who do so called "Investors".

Rather than incurring the burden of purchasing, installing, and maintaining their own hardware, researchers can allocate grant or startup funds to the CRC for community hardware purchases and the benefits stated below. 

Benefits of Investing in CRC Resources

Professional Maintenance and Support All hardware is professionally managed by the Network Operations Center at no charge to investors, and are administered with state of the art networking and security practices.
SLURM Allocation Service Units Investors receive a 5-year user investment allocation on CRC hardware, equivalent to 85% of the computational resources that they would have utilized had they purchased and housed hardware within their own group, enabling utilization of their investment in the context of the existing CRC infrastructure.
Priority Job Submission Investors receive higher priority on jobs submitted to CRC resources.
Bulk Volume Equipment Rates Investors can take advantage of lower equipment prices negotiated by CRC based on the large volumes required for our cluster refreshes.
Better Utilization and Energy Efficiency As the pool of resources available to the community increases, security is enhanced, and the energy consumed by the invested equipment is likely to be much lower than if the invested equipment had been hosted in individual labs.


How Investment Resources are Made Available to Investors

While the bulk of a whole-node computing resource investment is made available to the greater Pitt Research community (investors included), many investors require exclusive access to some component of their investment hardware. It is the CRC's policy that exclusive access can be maintained to up to 20 percent of the hardware purchased by investment. For example, if a faculty member were to set investment funds towards 5 compute nodes, 4 of them will be made available to the community (again, also accessible to them), and 1 can be set aside specifically for use by that Investor and their user group.

The investor will be guaranteed access to 100 percent of the equivalent in service units (SUs) of the theoretical total CPU hours from the contributed funds for 5 years (the expected lifetime of the system). Each year, the faculty member will be given a new allocation of 1/5 of the 5-year allocation. Up to half of any unused annual allocation can be carried forward into the next year.