Cloud managers from European research and education networks and leading cloud suppliers came together for a range of training activities during a workshop organised by the EU-funded EaPConnect and GÉANT projects.

Participants met on 4-5 March 2020 in Nicosia, Cyprus, hosted by CyNet. The event was arranged to facilitate knowledge transfer between national research and education networks (NRENs) from countries in Europe and the Eastern Partnership (EaP).

The GÉANT Cloud team in collaboration with the Learning and Development team ‘GLAD’ introduced the GÉANT Cloud portfolio, the range of available tools, and the skills and knowledge needed for making decisions about cloud services.

Participants had the opportunity to see and discuss the newest cloud technologies with experts from AWS, Microsoft and Google, and to understand their approaches to cloud implementation. The presence of these three providers offered great benefits to the NREN Cloud Managers. Presentations gave a high-level view of cloud usage for NRENs’ clients and provided both technical detail and examples of cloud implementation use-cases.

Hrachya Astsatryan of ASNET-AM (centre) and Alexei Belotserkovsky of BASNET (right) in a group discussion at the clouds workshop in Nicosia., ©GÉANT
Google presentation, ©GÉANT

The workshop provided a unique opportunity to learn about the internal DNA of giant cloud providers, and to understand their sales philosophy and service development strategy.”

Alexei Belotserkovsky, BASNET (Belarus)
AWS presentation, ©GÉANT
Microsoft presentation, ©GÉANT

The timing of the workshop was vital, as it will be followed by the launch of the ‘Infrastructure-as-a-Service’ (IaaS) cloud services provided by the Eastern Partnership NRENs and will contribute to that process. General information about novel cloud solutions has been provided, and is crucial to get more benefits from the GÉANT IaaS framework.”

Hrachya Astsatryan, ASNET-AM (Armenia)

The ability to share experience and knowledge across the NREN community allows them to rapidly learn how best to implement cloud services for research and education.