CSUSB to Upgrade its Online Network to 100 Gigabytes to Accommodate Faculty Research

By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley)– Cal State San Bernardino is one of eight California State University campuses that have been approved by the CSU Chancellor’s Office to upgrade their online networks to high-speed 100 gigabytes, but the only campus to be upgraded to accommodate faculty research.

“This is great news for CSUSB. Our faculty will now be able to pursue various national grants that require such a robust infrastructure to support their research computing needs,” said university Provost Shari McMahan. “It is also a great recruitment tool to bring in faculty who are focused on research using big data and high throughput computing. Ultimately, it helps our student success as they work with their faculty mentors on their research projects.”

Cal State San Bernardino will be upgraded to a 100 gigabyte link to the nonprofit California Research and Education Network (CalREN), a high-capacity network designed to meet the unique requirements of more than 20 million users, including the vast majority of K-20 students, together with educators, researchers and individuals at other vital public-serving institutions. CalREN is operated by the nonprofit Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC).

The upgrade is expected to be completed by January 2019. Currently the campus has two, 10 gigabyte links, said Sam Sudhakar, the university’s chief information officer and the vice president for Information Technology Services (ITS).

CSUSB recently partnered with the Pacific Research Platform (PRP), a science-driven high capacity data-centric “freeway system” on a large regional scale, Sudhakar said. The ITS department recently established a data transfer node for the university’s network to connect to resources on the PRP.

Through this partnership and infrastructure on campus, CSUSB will be able to accommodate high performance and high throughput computing from several grant funded programs in physics, chemistry, geology, cybersecurity and the university’s Water Resources Institute.

“We are currently working with faculty researchers on a pilot mode to test the infrastructure and hope to roll it out to the greater faculty community in the fall,” Sudhakar said.

The upgraded infrastructure will also allow CSUSB to provide enhanced services to:

  • Better serve the university’s growing student population, and its need and demand for high bandwidth applications and enhanced connectivity;
  • Extend service to new buildings on campus, especially the student housing expansion, which will push demand for higher bandwidth;
  • Expand  faculty-led innovation and research – high performance and high throughput computing, augmented reality and virtual reality technologies, artificial intelligence and machine learning, supporting the California State University’s Graduation Initiative 2025;
  • Create  expanding science “demilitarized zones” (a physical or logical subnetwork that contains and exposes an organization’s external-facing services to an untrusted network, usually a larger network such as the internet) and isolated networks to support programs such as cybersecurity and Water Resources Institute; and
  • Move more applications to the Cloud to support growing campus needs: ITS and CO Cloud Strategies.

The university’s Palm Desert Campus will also be upgraded one gigabyte to 10 gigabytes to accommodate the campus’ growing needs and for better connectivity to the CSUSB campus for the delivery of academic programs and student services, Sudhakar said.

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