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InTheLoop | 11.04.2002

The Weekly Electronic Newsletter for Berkeley Lab Computubg Sciences Employees

November 4, 2002

NERSC, IBM Sign Agreement to Double Size of Supercomputer

The National Energy Research Scientific Computing (NERSC) Center has
signed a contract with IBM to double the size of NERSC's 3,328-processor
RS/6000 SP supercomputer, creating a machine with a peak speed of 10
teraflop/s. NERSC made the decision to increase the capability of the
existing system, rather than purchase an entirely new one, after a
thorough review of proposals from a number of leading supercomputer
vendors. The new contract, which includes five years of support for the
combined system, is valued at about $30 million.

The agreement calls for new equipment to be installed in November with
the 6,656-processor IBM system expected to become available to NERSC
users by April 2003. This is the largest number of processors ever to be
made available on an open production system.

"With the success of DOE's Scientific Discovery through Advanced
Computing program, NERSC is seeing an unprecedented level of requests
for time on our systems. With this agreement, we have an almost-instant
solution to this situation," said Horst Simon, director of the NERSC


Lab to Share Computing, Networking Expertise at Upcoming SC2002 Conference

Berkeley Lab will share its expertise in advancing scientific computing
with the high-performance computing and networking community at the
SC2002 conference to be held Nov. 16-22 in Baltimore. Berkeley Lab
scientists and users of the NERSC Center located at the Lab will
instruct in three tutorials, give one plenary talk, present 10 technical
papers, conduct two "birds-of-a-feather" sessions and moderate one panel
discussion. Additionally, LBNL staff will give talks in exhibit booths
for NASA, LBNL and DOE's Scientific Discovery through Advanced Computing
(SciDAC) program. For more information about the Lab's contributions to
the conference program, go to

Employees with Access to 50B-1275 Need to Take Halon Safety Training

With the move of ITSD equipment to the 50B-1275 computer room, all
employees needing access to this room must have current halon safety
training. Halon gas is used in the room's fire suppression system and
when discharged can pose a safety hazard. Anyone who hasn't taken the
training by Dec. 31 will lose access to the room.

The training is easy and straightforward -- watch a 16-minute video and
take a quiz. The video can be viewed online at

For more information, contact Martin Dooly (MKDooly@lbl.gov) or Parisa
Farvid (PFarvid@lbl.gov).

What Should You Do If Your System's Security Is Breached?

You have probably noticed the rapid increase in the number of Internet
attacks due to worms, hackers, compromised Web sites, and other causes.
What should you do if you think that your system has been compromised?
First and foremost, avoid the impulse to react to whatever is wrong
because you could damage your system. Contact your system
administrator, then contact your division security liaison (see
http://www.lbl.gov/ITSD/Security/people/cpic.html). When in doubt,
simply call 486-HELP or send email to help@lbl.gov.

Register Now for Nov. 25 Computer Security Fundamentals Course

Computer security (more commonly known in professional circles as
"information security" and in government circles as "information
assurance") has grown substantially in importance over the years. System
administrators, users and managers are often forced to make changes
because of security considerations without genuinely understanding why.
A free half-day course on computer security fundamentals presents the
"why's and wherefore's" of computer security with the goal of helping
attendees understand why things are done the way they are in the
computer security arena. Topics include an introduction to computer
security, risks and threats, vulnerabilities and exposures, types of
security measures, and how decisions are made. This course includes a
wide range of both high-level and technical information in addressing
these issues.
Date and Time: 9 a.m.-12:15 p.m., Monday, Nov. 25
Place: Bldg. 66 auditorium
Instructor: Gene Schultz
To enroll, use the Training link at https://hris.lbl.gov/.

About Computing Sciences at Berkeley Lab

The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) Computing Sciences organization provides the computing and networking resources and expertise critical to advancing the Department of Energy's research missions: developing new energy sources, improving energy efficiency, developing new materials and increasing our understanding of ourselves, our world and our universe.

ESnet, the Energy Sciences Network, provides the high-bandwidth, reliable connections that link scientists at 40 DOE research sites to each other and to experimental facilities and supercomputing centers around the country. The National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) powers the discoveries of 7,000-plus scientists at national laboratories and universities, including those at Berkeley Lab's Computational Research Division (CRD). CRD conducts research and development in mathematical modeling and simulation, algorithm design, data storage, management and analysis, computer system architecture and high-performance software implementation. NERSC and ESnet are Department of Energy Office of Science User Facilities.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory addresses the world's most urgent scientific challenges by advancing sustainable energy, protecting human health, creating new materials, and revealing the origin and fate of the universe. Founded in 1931, Berkeley Lab's scientific expertise has been recognized with 13 Nobel prizes. The University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the DOE’s Office of Science.

DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.energy.gov.