Computing Environments at UVA


The primary vehicle for high-performance computing since 2014 has been the Rivanna cluster. Rivanna is a heterogenous system with a total of 603 nodes and 20476 cpu cores. It consists of 527 nodes with 20-40 cores and 128-768GB of RAM each, 11 large memory nodes with 16-48 cores and 1-1.5TB of RAM each, and 29 nodes with a total of 172 NVIDIA GPU accelerators (K80, P100, V100, A100, RTX-2080 Ti). These nodes are partitioned for various types of workloads, but include development, parallel, HTC and instructional partitions. All nodes are supported by a high-performance EDR/FDR Infiniband network using Mellanox hardware. The Rivanna cluster also provides approximately 1.9PB of scratch (temporary) storage on a high-speed Lustre filesystem. Users may also lease space on “Reseaarch Project” and “Research Standard” storage that is mounted to Rivanna, as well as elsewhere.

Rivanna is allocated by service units (SUs) and is managed under the “hotel” model in which researchers buy SUs rather than physical nodes. Service units generally correspond to core-hours, but in the case of very large memory jobs users must pay at least partially for cores not scheduled by the resource manager on that node due to the additional memory usage. We have also begun implementing a partial “condo” model, in which researchers can purchase time tied to cores or can purchase their own hardware to add to the cluster. This model coexists with the SU model for users who do not wish to make a large expenditure for time, or who can successfully manage their projects through free allocations from RC or from their Dean’s office.

Coming soon: 5 nodes with a total of 20 RTX3090 GPU devices.


Ivy is a computing system that meets all Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI), and International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) data security requirements. Ivy satisfies the needs of researchers who must comply with all of the rules and regulations surrounding these directives, but do not have a system that meets the appropriate hardware/software standards.

The Ivy platform provides ~3000 cpu cores consisting of approximately 32 x 36-core nodes with 256GB of RAM each, 27 x 20-core nodes with 384GB of RAM, 24 x 40-core nodes with 384GB each. In addition, nodes supporting specialty hardware include 4 nodes with NVIDIA V100 GPGPUs, and 1 node with NVIDIA M60 GPGPUs. All nodes are connected by a 10+10GbE Ethernet network to provide client and external network storage access. A high-performance EDR Infiniband network using Mellanox hardware is available on the 40-core standard compute and V100 GPGPU nodes. Users may also lease space on high security “Project” and “Value” storage that is mounted on Ivy resources and accessible via Globus high security DTN.

Faculty/staff may request Ivy resources in the form of virtual machines (VMs) with software customized for their needs. The project PI can create a list of project members who should also be given access to the VM. Ivy VMs are available at different tiers. By default, every Ivy VM is allocated 1TB of storage in Ivy Central Storage (ICS). Transferring data in and out of Ivy is done through a Globus Data Transfer Node. Primarly intended as a computational resource, Ivy was not designed for long-term data storage.


Microservices enable researchers to run containerized applications in a single managed environment. Researchers bring their own containers or multi-container solutions, and UVA Research Computing coordinates their deployment. Once deployed, users manage their own services, including versioning, content, scaling, and connectivity to other services.

The UVA microservice platform supported by Research Computing is a multi-node Kubernetes cluster. This platform currently consists of 12 nodes totaling ~860 cores and 4.6TB of memory. The system is located in the UVA Standard Security Zone and has full network visibility to other SSZ resources such as the Rivanna HPC system. Included in this cluster are ingress controllers for routing inbound requests and SSL management, a secrets manager, namespaces with role-based access, and a GitOps model for service deployment and management. Kubernetes nodes currently have remote access to Research Standard Storage shares.