[Bioclusters] Chargeback(s) for cluster use?

Kent Brodie brodie at mcw.edu
Wed Jan 5 14:33:40 EST 2005

Andy--  first, I agree with you COMPLETELY on all fronts.  That is, either
don't charge for it, or, charge as a fixed shared resource.  I also have no
interest in becoming a bookkeeper :-)

BUT...    I was "asked to ask...."...   thus, the question remains open.  I
appreciate the feedback!

(anyone else?)

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Andrew D. Fant [mailto:fant at pobox.com]
> Sent: Wednesday, January 05, 2005 1:31 PM
> To: Clustering, compute farming & distributed computing in life science
> informatics
> Subject: Re: [Bioclusters] Chargeback(s) for cluster use?
> Kent Brodie wrote:
> > Greetings - New Bioinformatics forum user here.   I expect to be an
> active
> > participant :-)
> >
> > I've been asked to look into other organizations that have a
> 'bioinformatics
> > cluster' similar to ours, and to find out if any of you have any sort of
> > "chargeback" scheme in place for users?  (By users, that could be other
> > departments within your organization, or even outside entities?).
> Kent,
>      Welcome to the list.  My best advice about chargeback is to avoid
> it if you can.  I've seen a couple of good sites killed by a move from
> funny-money allocations to hard currency chargeback.  Even if people are
> willing and able to pay hard currency per cycle/byte/block for the
> resource, you very quickly run to a point where it's almost a full-time
> bookkeeping job just tracking all the costs of running the service and
> apportioning them appropriately.
> The ideal way to fund shared resource bioinformatics clusters is, of
> course, to be funded as an overhead shared resource.8-).  Failing that,
> my approach would be to go to the groups/departments that would
> utilizing the resource and ask them to pony up a share of the costs on
> an regular basis, and use a fairshare scheduler on the cluster to make
> sure that the groups get cycles in proportion to their support.   If
> your user communities trust each other, a simple model of paying up
> something for access is also easier, but be sure you don't get into the
> position of being personally expected to arbite disputes between users
> about resource hogging.
> Hope This Helps,
> 		Andy
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