Seagate is the world’s leading provider of Data Storage devices, equipment and services. The organisation is a worldwide multi-national registered in Ireland (Seagate Technology plc) with more than 56,000 employees; the division of the organisation responsible for this project is Seagate Systems UK Ltd. Seagate operates two primary divisions within its corporate operations, Seagate Technology develops and produces data storage devices including disk drives, solid state drives and solid state storage for use in applications from consumer to extreme performance HPC, a large facility is located in Northern Ireland. The newer division, Seagate Systems has been created following the acquisition of Xyratex Technology in April 2014, combining this organisation with Evault, Dot Hill (more recently), and other internal Seagate systems activities to create a high capability storage systems supply organisation.

A key product line acquired from Xyratex and continuing with Seagate is the ClusterStor range of products, these are fully engineered data storage systems with all hardware, file systems software and system management provided. Systems are provided through our OEM or business partnerships. These systems support some of the world’s most powerful supercomputers.

The systems are installed or planned in a number of installations in Europe including the ones in Met Office UK, EPCC, DKRZ and ECMWF with capacities of up to 45 Petabytes and >1.4 TB/s performance in future deployments.

The Seagate Systems (ex Xyratex) group has around 500 engineers employed in creating Hardware and supporting Software for the Enterprise and High Performance Computing applications. Seagate owns the Lustre trademark and several of their engineers were involved in the original Lustre architecture and design. Within Seagate Systems (UK) the Emerging Technology Group manages collaborative research activities within Europe and will work in concert with development engineering groups based in UK.

Role in the project

Seagate is happy to take part in ESiWACE as we see significant opportunity for business growth based around its success.

Seagate’s skills have been harnessed to create a next generation object storage technology with capabilities well beyond any similar solutions on the market.  Seagate will provide instances of this storage technology and develop native support software that enables the NETCDF and GRiB data formats to be efficiently stored and accessed, providing multiple ‘views’ of the stored data. Seagate will also contribute its deep skills and knowledge of current and future data storage technologies to assist the study of optimized data management by the community.

Seagate Systems is a key supplier of data storage systems (in partnership with Other Equipment Manufacturers) with installations of their equipment in a number of sites of partners within this proposal. We are keen to work much more closely, understanding the user needs and specific opportunities to create or tune systems to maximize the effectiveness of our systems in these user environments.

Names of the colleagues involved

Andy Nimmo (male): Andy is a Principal Engineer in Systems Design and Systems Integration for Seagate. Andy holds a BEng (Hons) in Software Engineering and joined Seagate from Adaptive Computing in January 2014. He has 10 years’ experience working in both private and public sectors of the HPC sector and has extensive experience from systems administrator level all the way up to system architecture, consultancy and security. After initially working as a QA Engineer focusing around networking and kernel comms on the ASCI Q project in 2003 he spent some time as a senior software engineer before moving to system management and workload scheduling back in HPC space. Since joining Seagate Andy has been chiefly involved with the next-generation High Availability project but more recently has been tasked with being in charge of systems integration for Seagate's next-gen systems product and is heavily involved with both scoping and the architecture of many aspects of this project.

Dr. Sai Narasimhamurthy (male): Sai is currently Staff Engineer, Seagate Research (formerly Lead Researcher, Emerging Tech, Xyratex) working on Research and Development for next generation storage systems (2010-). He has also actively led and contributed to many European led HPC and Cloud research initiatives on behalf of Xyratex (2010-).   Previously (2005 - 2009) , Sai was CTO and Co-founder at 4Blox, inc, a venture capital backed storage infrastructure software company in California addressing IP SAN (Storage Area Network) performance issues as a software only solution. During the course of his doctoral dissertation at Arizona State University (2001-2005), Sai has worked on IP SAN protocol issues from the early days of iSCSI (2001). Sai also worked with Intel R&D and was a contributing participant in the first stages of the RDMA consortium (put together by IBM, Cisco and Intel) for IP Storage and 10GbE (2002). Earlier in his career, Sai worked as Systems Engineer with Nortel Networks through Wipro, India focusing on Broadband Networking solutions (2000-2001). 

Malcolm Muggeridge (male):  Malcolm is Sr Dir Engineering responsible for collaborative research at Seagate Systems UK. He joined Seagate through its acquisition of Xyratex in 2014 and was with Xyratex at its creation as a management buyout from IBM in 1994.

Malcolm has more than 38 years’ experience through his employment with IBM and Xyratex in the Technology, manufacturing, quality and reliability of Disk drives and Networked data storage systems and in recent years in HPC data storage, architecting and managing designs and new technologies across many products. More recently he has been focused on Strategic Innovation and Business development, Research & Technology. He is a steering board member of the ETP4HPC defining research objectives for future within Euorpe and is active in the Partnership board of the cPPP on HPC. He is a member of the UK eInfrastructure board with Special interest in HPC. Malcolm has a B.Eng degree in Electronics from Liverpool University.

Dr Nikita Danilov (male): Nikita Danilov is a Consultant Software Architect at Seagate. His work on storage started in 2001, when he joined Namesys to develop the reiserfs file system for Linux. Since 2004 he worked on Lustre in ClusterFS, later acquired by Sun. In 2009 he followed the original Lustre architect—Peter Braam—to the latter's new company Clusterstor to design and implement an exascale storage system, this technology was acquired by Xyratex and forms the basis of the NEXT system. He received a PhD in mathematical cybernetics from Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology.

Giuseppe Congiu (male): Giuseppe Congiu is a Research Engineer (formerly Research Software Engineer at Xyratex) working for Seagate on collaborative European projects. Giuseppe has worked at the Dynamic Exascale Entry Platform – Extended Reach (DEEP-ER) project since 2013, studying and developing parallel I/O solutions for the DEEP-ER I/O stack. He joined Xyratex in 2011 as Marie Curie ITN fellow. Previously, he has been working with IBM and CRS4 (2009-2010) at the development of a computer diagnostic tool for medical images analysis and classification. Giuseppe has a Bsc and Msc in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from University of Cagliari (IT).    

Relevant infrastructure and services available for climate & weather

Seagate Systems has within its development operations some medium scale storage systems linked  to  small  scale  computational  capabilities  for  the  evaluation  and  test  of  new  storage hardware and software. For this project this facility will be utilised to explore the characteristics of IO with new storage techniques.