Established in 1991, Japan’s National University Corporation’s Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST) offers graduate courses in information science, biological sciences, and materials science. With world-class research activities and a reputation for fostering outstanding academic talent, NAIST expanded its faculty with prominent academics from some of the country’s major universities, including Nobel Prize-winning physiologist Shinya Yamanaka. In 2010, the Japanese government recognized NAIST as the country’s premier research university, based on its contribution to the fields of science and technology.
NAIST wanted to centralize its campuswide, Hadoop-based file systems and provide a high-performance, secure, and flexible cloud-based information processing platform to support its cross-discipline research projects at lower cost while maintainig its competitive edge. By implementing Oracle Big Data Appliance and Oracle ZFS Storage ZS3-2, NAIST gained the ability to integrate and process a massive volume of structured and unstructured research data from Hadoop, and it increased its storage capacity to 4 petabytes.
NAIST constructed a virtualized environment with 2,400 processors, based on a platform of 200 Sun servers from Oracle—including Sun Blade X4-2B and Sun Server X3-2. It also used Oracle Fabric Interconnect to rapidly and flexibly connect over 4,000 clients to its network and storage device. This simplified server management through the use of a single cable for the entire environment, instead of multiple cards and storage cables, reducing the capital costs of traditional server connectivity. In addition, NAIST deployed Oracle’s Sun Datacenter InfiniBand Switch 36 to bind Oracle’s Sun Server X2-8, Sun Server X4-2, Sun Server X4-2L, and Sun Blade X4-2B into a high-performing, highly scalable, and flexible cluster. Finally, NAIST gained an ultra-high-speed (40 GBps) network and provided the institute with a highly available and resilient network, enabling professors and students to reliably access research data.