OpenStack is a free and open software suite for providing Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) both for private clouds like we’re implementing and large public clouds. We are currently using “Nova” compute services, “Keystone” identity service, “Horizon” web dashboard, “Cinder” volume service,“Glance” image management,“Neutron” networking service, and “Heat” orchestration service. We are currently using the “Mitaka” release (aka 2016.1 released May 2016) 16.04LTS “Xenial” with KVM as the virtualization layer. We also have an OpenStack “Swift” and AWS S3 compatible object store based on Ceph with 168TB available storage (505TB raw less 3x replication)

As of June 2018 we have 40 physical nodes, with 1720 cores and 11T RAM.

Read the Quick Start below (which describes how to get an account) before using the web interface at or the CLI.


Who pays for this service?

Individual research groups are not charged for their usage. Some of the hardware that the service runs on is donated; all the remaining expenses come out of the CSAIL overhead budget. In the absence of a chargeback system, the quota system encourages users to consult TIG before placing large demands on the service and helps to avoid gross waste of resources. That said, if the OpenStack service meets your needs, you should not hesitate to use it rather than buying hardware just for yourself.

Upstream Documentation