Cloud services getting into top gear 


The last several months have been very active for the GÉANT Clouds team as the efforts for national rollouts and trials of the GÉANT Cloud offerings enter high gear. While there is still much to be done in to formalise the package and develop suitable delivery and integration methods, serious deployment efforts are well underway.


The GÉANT Clouds team is actively working with both vendors and NRENs (and their institutions), helping to understand the needs of all groups and users, and ensuring the arrangements meet these needs and support the R&E communities across Europe.


Working with Suppliers

On the vendor side, the completion of the IaaS Framework Agreement in September 2016 was an important milestone. The team worked tirelessly with many vendors and legal advisors to ensure compliance with EU regulations and more. Once that was completed and made public, work began collating and publicising data each vendor wished to communicate to the community.


These efforts are ongoing and results, up to date additions and revisions, as they come in, can be seen in the GÉANT Cloud Catalogue (https://clouds.geant.org/services/geant-cloud-catalogue/​).


GÉANT Support for NRENs

To facilitate and stimulate adoption and roll-out, the GÉANT project is now offering additional manpower resources to support promotion of the IaaS services portfolio and ensure a synchronized, collaborative approach.


“This initiative expresses GÉANT’s commitment to advancing efforts toward a European Digital Single Market and the European Open Science Cloud,” says Andres Steijaert, Activity leader for the GÉANT project’s Application Services Delivery Development team. “I am confident that this resource will accelerate uptake by our NREN partners.”


For more information on applying for this manpower allocation, please visit: ​https://clouds.geant.org/nren-support/​​


Spotlight on Portugal: Computação em nuvem

Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, through its FCCN unit that manages the Portuguese NREN, has made considerable progress to date amongst its institutions. Two Service Commencement Forms were already signed, four are in the final stages of signing, and negotiations are ongoing to sign another three. Initial plans for a subsidized test pilot are underway, with six institutions expressing interest, and three have already assigned a pilot manager and agreed on terms. João Pagaime and his team have made considerable investment in outreach to achieve these impressive results.


Three video casts have taken place, two of which were in cooperation with a Portuguese supplier. Another video cast is planned by year-end 2017. The IaaS framework agreement was also presented at the annual event “Jornadas FCCN” that took place in Vila Real in April 2017.


Pagaime acknowledges that the uptake of this offering is complex, and therefore it may take some time. In addition to the bureaucratic challenges, there are integration and other pricing obstacles to overcome. “But despite the long implementation process, we have no doubt that this is the way to go,” says João. “An almost ‘off-the-shelf’ public cloud procurement model, that is uniform in quality and custom-designed for researchers and favourably priced, is the solution that is going to complement, and possibly redefine, national e-infrastructures here in Portugal.”


How does the GÉANT Framework Agreement work?

To find out how the GÉANT Framework Agreement works and how NRENs and Institutions can take advantage of the savings and integration benefits the clouds team have created a short video (https://clouds.geant.org/resources/)


If you, your NREN or your institution have any questions, please contact the Clouds Team at clouds@geant.org.​