Universität Bonn

University IT and Data Center

Dies academicus at HRZ: HPC guided tour

As part of the Dies academicus of the University of Bonn on May 15, 2024, interested participants had the rare opportunity to take a look behind the scenes and the usually closed doors of the ultra-modern high-performance computer "Marvin". The supercomputer, which was ranked among the top 500 fastest computers in the world with its impressive computing capacity at its official inauguration in autumn 2023, has been in operation since March 2024 and has been available for use by all members of the university ever since.

The guided tour of the "Marvin" machine room offered participants at Dies academicus the opportunity to learn more about the technical details and the wide range of applications of the high-performance computer. Interested parties were able to get an idea of the impressive technology on site and ask questions directly to the experts in charge.

Technical insights and infrastructure

The high-performance computer "Marvin" has around 300 computing nodes, some of which are equipped with powerful NVIDIA GPUs and some with Intel CPUs. The University IT and Data Center (HRZ) of the University of Bonn is responsible for the installation and operation of the system, but due to its enormous size and the special requirements of the system, "Marvin" was housed in the premises of the Institute of Numeric Simulation (INS), as the HRZ itself did not have sufficient space. The HPC/A-Lab is the central point of contact for HPC-related research projects.

The tour was conducted by Jan Steiner, HPC team member at the University IT and Data Center. A particular focus of the tour was on the power and cooling requirements of "Marvin". Operating such a powerful supercomputer not only requires an enormous power supply, but also an extensive cooling system to efficiently dissipate the heat generated and maximize system performance.

WLAN-equipment - Application possible until the end of May

Providing a network infrastructure that meets all user requirements is a complex task and requires the right resources and technologies as well as thorough analysis and planning, especially at a university.

The network department at the University IT and Data Center of the University of Bonn is currently facing various challenges.

On the one hand, the network department is faced with the task of managing a large number of new leases and renovations at the University of Bonn. First of all, moving into a new building means connecting the premises to the network infrastructure and thus creating the basis for work at the university. The WLAN network connection is established by so-called “access points” (distribution points), which not only have to be installed once, but also regularly maintained and replaced. The rapid increase in APs to currently over 1,900 (as of May 2024) and limited personnel resources lead to various problems. There is always an enormous backlog when it comes to replacing obsolete access points that have reached “EOL” (end-of-life) status. These are discontinued products that are no longer produced or supported and therefore need to be replaced with new products. Consequently, the replacement of these APs must be prioritized based on their critical importance for the network. The network department of the University IT and Data Center also coordinates the installation of the APs by external service providers.

On the other hand, the expansion of WLAN and the increase in new spaces and refurbishment projects are leading to an increased need for new installations.

The entire WLAN-equipment process requires not only a structured schedule, but also the implementation of project teams and the automation of planning and deployment processes in order to meet the requirements and achieve the necessary speed of deployment.

HPC: Guided tours on Dies academicus

As part of the upcoming Dies academicus on May 15, 2024, the HPC team at the University IT and Data Center is offering two guided tours in the machine room of the new high-performance computer "Marvin":

Start of guided tour group 1: 1:00 pm
Start of guided tour group 2: 1:30 pm

Please note: The number of participants is limited to 15 people per group. Participation without prior registration and confirmation is unfortunately not possible. If you are interested in participating, please contact Jan Steiner (jan.steiner@uni-bonn.de) by e-mail by Monday, May 13, 2024 at the latest.

Together with the confirmation of participation, you will receive all further information (including the meeting point) by e-mail.

Girls'Day 2024 at HRZ

What parts does a computer consist of? How do smartphones and laptops communicate? How do you create a secure password, what do the server rooms at a university look like and how does a 3D printer actually work? These and many other exciting questions were answered at this year's Girls'Day, the nationwide Girls' Future Day, at the University IT and Data Center. Once again this year, schoolgirls between the 8th and 10th grades were able to gain an insight into the world of IT and work at the University IT and Data Center. The aim of the Girls'Day was to inspire the participants with a combination of practical learning and a playful element for technology and to deepen their understanding.

The morning was designed as a big scavenger hunt through the University IT and Data Center. At individual stations, the participants got to know the IT helpdesk, the 3D printers, workstation systems and network communication. There were short presentations at each station, followed by a quiz. The aim of the scavenger hunt was to collect solution words that were required for the task in the afternoon. After the tour of the server rooms at the HRZ and the subsequent lunch break, it was straight on: in a model house with four offices, four Raspberry Pi's were waiting to be networked and wired up by the girls. Once the monitors, switches and keyboards had been connected, the master password could be entered and the network connections made.

New confluence space for recording technology in lecture halls

The eLecture team is pleased to present the new pages on “Lecture room equipment” in the eCampus Confluence space to all lecturers at the University of Bonn. The new information pages provide a comprehensive overview of the available recording technology and can be particularly helpful to lecturers when planning recordings.

The new Confluence pages on lecture hall equipment contain all relevant information on recording technology in the centrally managed rooms in the main buildings/Römerstraße and on the Endenich/Poppelsdorf campus. Various recording options (sound/camera) are available in the lecture halls, details of which and operating instructions can be found in the relevant sections on the pages.

To make the work of lecturers easier, the eLecture team has created images of the lecture halls, which can be helpful in preparing the respective course.

HPC classes in summer term 2024

The HPC team at the University IT and Data Center is once again offering a series of exciting introductory courses and workshops (in English language) on high-performance computing in the summer term 2024.

The program for the HPC classes in the summer term 2024 is as follows:

  • Introduction to Programming with Python
    23.04.2024 - 24.04.2024 or 25.04.2024 - 26.04.2024 3:30 - 7 pm on each day, HRZ Wegelerstr. 6, room 0.012

  • Linux Introduction Course
    23.05.2024 - 24.05.2024 3:30 - 7 pm on each day, In Person at HRZ (Wegelerstr.6), room 0.012

  • Introduction to Working on HPC Clusters
    04.06.2024 - 05.06.2024 or 06.06.2024 - 07.06.2024 3 - 7 pm on each day, HRZ, Wegelerstr. 6, Kursraum (room 0.012)

  • Version Control with Git
    18.06.2024 - 19.06.2024, 3:30 - 7 pm on each day, HRZ, Wegelerstr. 6, Kursraum (room 0.012)

  • Building a Raspberry Pi Cluster
    Wednesday, 04.09.2024, 9 am - 5 pm, HRZ, Wegelerstr. 6, Kursraum (room 0.012)
Girls'Day 2024 - we're taking part!

Girls'Day is back on April 25, 2024 and we at the University IT and Data Center are taking part!

We are pleased that we can once again offer an exciting range of activities and an interesting program for Girls'Day - Girls' Future Day - the nationwide orientation day for career and study orientation for girls from 8th to 10th grade.

The aim is for the girls to get to know professions and study subjects on this day in which the proportion of women is below 40%. Like so many IT departments, the University IT and Data Center is clearly male-dominated. That should change! 

Start of registration for IT courses in summer term 2024

The lecturers of the HRZ are looking forward to your registrations for the following IT courses via eCampus from April 15, 2024.

  • Table processing

MS Excel I - Basics - 15.05. - 17.05.2024, 09:00 - 12:00

  • Graphics editing

Image editing with GIMP - 08.05. - 22.05.2024, 13:00 - 16:00 

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