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ITPG Meeting Notes: 2011-4-21

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Attendees (17):

John Ajao, Arlene Allen, Lubo Bojilov, Doug Drury, Ann Dundon, Matthew Dunham, James Kinneavy, Bill Koseluk, Dan Lloyd, Jennifer Mehl, Elise Meyer, Steve Miley, Ben Price, Tom Putnam, Andy Satomi, Paul Weakliem, Jim Woods

Administrative Items

1. The Meeting Notes from the 3/17/2011 meeting were approved.

2. ITPG Nominating Committee Announced

The nominating committee is Richard Kip, John Ajao, Elise Meyer and Joe Sabado.  Please send email to Richard with nominations, either for yourself or for someone else.

3. ITPG Review of the charter.

We made a few changes last year.  Do we have any additional changes this year? 

Question: Is there a minimum attendance requirement to be an ITPG chair? Answer: No, one should self-determine how active the candidates are. 

Question: How many hours per month did Jim & Bruce spent to provide benchmark for potential candidates?  Answer: 2-4 hours per month for preparation, plus the position entails membership on other committees that leads to a total of 10 hours per month. 

Question: IdM gives reports to two groups: ITPG & EISPG – is that efficient & effective?  Who owns what projects?  Answer: The issue is the customer perspective – ITPG is more technical, and EISPG is more functional.  There are some services and projects that will require presentations to multiple groups, e.g., SIS group.  That allows two groups to advocate at the ITB.

Question: Our membership is strictly IT staff, and communications between IT staff is good. Do we adequately reach functional and academic people?  Answer: Our assumption is that ITPG members are going back and talking with their functional people.  The charter currently does limit membership to IT people.  Possible actions could be to send a group to ABOG, advertise ITPG meeting notes to others, and/or survey departments for functional issues.

Informational Items

CIO Report - Tom Putnam

At our last meeting discussion of the Financial Information System (FIS) indicated almost definitively that we would be getting off the mainframe and move to UCLA's system.  That has changed dramatically – UCLA is now on the back burner!  We are back to looking at other alternatives.  The most prominently discussed one is going with Kuali.  Kauli Financial System (KFS) is the accounting piece of it.  There is also Kuali COEUS, which is the research administration piece, but not everyone runs all pieces.  UCD is the first to go with it.  They've brought up the chart of accounts, and they plan to bring up KFS next year.  No one else in UC system is using it.  There are various institutions around the country implmenting it.  This would make our timeframe worse, but there was concern that the UCLA solution was a step backwards.  We are now trying to mitigate risk on our current system, and to keep it alive a couple more years.  We will have Gartner come in to help us.  If we had $50M are there any good solutions that would be an appropriate fit? There are both PeopleSoft and Oracle solutions that provide HR, Finance, and Student systems.  Both are mature systems that are used by lots of U's around country.  But they ar expensive and often organizations have problems implementing them - they are very configurable, but one can get into trouble doing it by committee and people end up unhappy.  The problem isn't the products, but its the way the campus does the implementation.  Problem w/UCLA system: perceived lack of functionality in many areas and not workflow based.  We use an upfront approval process and most of the UCLA system does post transaction approvals.  E.g., Purchasing and payment: payment was made as soon as purchase accomplished, to get vendor reimbursements.  But if vendor doesn't deliver what we wanted, or doesn't deliver all at once, that can be a problem.  UCSB pay's on receipt of item.  For both of these we could mitigate by keeping the products that we have.  Another biggie that bothered us was that UCLA was working hard to replace their system 5 years out.  The idea of planning for mulitple conversions was unhappy.  UCOP still want campus to standardize business processes.    We're trying to implement a new paradigm at the same time that's being discussed.  Right now multiple UCs are using Peoplesoft pieces.  For Kuali Davis and Irvine plan to use it, with us and San Diego looking at it.  Extension spent many years trying to collaborate on a system w/other UCs.  We should talk with them for lessons learned.  Extension ended up buying COTS and implemented in 6 months vs. 5 years of development.  Need appropriate project management and staff level both during development and afterwards, Student Affairs plans for an additional 3 years of work to accomplish their plan.

UC PPS project: The objective is that all campuses and medical centers will use one instance.  This week they are listening to vendor presentations.  Next week we will be hearing of selections.  This project is moving at breakneck speed.  There hasn't been much thought to how to implement it at different campuses, so the committees are looking at staffing.  The selection could be run local, or hosted, or in the cloud.  So it is hard to determine staffing level, if the cloud solution is selected, then we would need project management & licensing expertise, and we'd have to develop performance criteria and how to measure it.  If running local, then we would need people to run it.  They have established a committees that is looking at business processes and workflow.

The Student Information System (SIS) project is doing code translation and they are doing great.

CISO Report - Karl Heins

  • The ECP has now been updated to allow monitoring.
  • IS-3 has been updated to include the incident response procedure.
  • Each campus is currently undergoing an IS-3 audit.
  • The campus continues to be probed for vulnerabilities - remain vigilant.

Subcommittee Reports

Backbone Engineering Group (BEG) - Glenn Schiferl

They have not met since our last meeting.

Security Working Group (SEC-WG) – Kevin Schmidt/Karl Heins

They have not met since our last meeting.

Web Standards and Content Working Group (WSG) - Ann Dundon

They are busy with training activities.  Their recent Mobile Web Workshop was fully booked. They had 40 people from 28 departments.  Both materials and a podcast are available under training activities.  There is a lot of information about the UCLA Mobile Web Framework.  Next Monday is another workshop on using social media.  There are currently 80 people signed up with an additional 27 on the waiting list.  They will do a repeat.  The presenters are Joe Sabado and panelists who are currently using it.  This will be an introduction on how to use it properly and how employing it can help your department. On 5/12 there will be a session on Credit Card Processing and PCI Compliance by Sandra Featherson.

ITPG Communications - Ann Dundon

We continued our discussion of IT training opportunities and researched what other campuses were doing.  Only Berkeley said this was a function of the central IT group.  Los Angeles has a scholarship program.  Davis has Skillsoft e-courses through the systemwide LMS.  Could we access their courses through the UC Learning Center?  Yes, but there may be licensing restrictions.  What courses does Davis have?  Student Affairs uses Plural Site.  It is Microsoft-based and is both Ondemand & instructor led.  Can the campus leverage the SA contract?  At what level of subscription can we get an attractive price?  They provide a week of training for developers.  We plan to send out a survey, and determine what are topics of interest.  There are clusters of technology that can leverage more than one division.  Plural Site is delivered from their instructional framework.  Jim Kinneavy is the SA contact.

Check out new features.

Identity Management Subcommittee (IdM) - Matthew Dunham/Karl Heins

They haven't met since our last meeting.  He sent a summary note to IDM mailing list.  Heavy development is in progress.  There is a published timeline of the last remaining milestones before the rollout ~June 13.  The biggest challenge is coordinating around egrade usage.  The tactical plan is to make a seamless transition off hours.  They plan to coordinate with ITPG-IdM and other IdM customers to manage testing and planning.  ?On mailman listserv site?  Steve will be scheduling a GauchoSpace downtime, since the faculty use it up until the deadline of Wednesday at midnight.  The old service will be replaced with the new service.  Beginning next week there will be a directory that is available for testing.

Will two directories will run in parallel to allow transitioning?  The new IDM includes two parallel servers, one that looks like the old system, and ldap.ucsb.edu that presents new service, and will reflect a more modern directory tree structure.  Over next year we will encourage customers to transition from directory.ucsb.edu to ldap.ucsb.edu .  The status on UC Trust functionality: as part of initial rollout we'll have capability to integrate into UC Trust, but the federation will be managed piecemeal.  I.e., we'll be rolling out the identity provider service, but that doesn't provide enduser technology.  Need to add multiple service providers.  Planned services: it.ucsb.edu, one in-house, and netpoint directory entries.  What about the UC Learning Center?  Something went wrong with the LMS integration with Shibboleth.  Need to deal with infrastructure issues with LMS.  No date, but working on it.

Campus Calendaring Workgroup - Jamie Sonsini

They have posted their evaluation criteria.  There are four groups looking at options.  Each group is in contact with the associated vendor and is working through the evaluation criteria.  In June they will schedule meetings to discuss the four options with a goal to making a selection this summer.

Liaison Reports

Information Technology Board (ITB) – Jim Woods

They did meet and discussed the same topics that we've been discussing.

IT Infrastructure Funding Committee (ITIF)- Tom Putnam

The concept of FTE fee that replaces the current RUAC & DNS fees has been blessed by Todd Lee and the EVC.  Now we need to take it to whole committee, so we are working on scheduling a meeting.  Todd Lee will continue to centrally fund IdM for one more year.

IT Operational Effectiveness (iTOE) - Tom Putnam

They are working on 3 projects and a topic of discussion.  The projects are a Collaboration suite, outsourcing student email and Telephone/VoIP.  Project plans were put together and presented to OE steering committee, CCBS will get presentations today.  The topic for discussion is an IT Governance structure, and the committee will look at it.  iTOE's work is done.  Most of the OE projects are requesting money.  VoIP is not asking for money, and we are planning for the cutover to occure on August 27th.  The Collaboration Suite scope is all faculty & staff.

Enterprise Information Systems Planning Group (EISPG) – Lubo Bojilov

They met last week and had similar updates.  They escalated the question of whether  planning was part of their duties to the ITB.  Should they holistically look at projects and prioritize them? They didn't get a definite charge or opinion from ITB.

Academic Technology Planning Group (ATPG) - Alan Moses

They have not met since our last meeting.

Research CyberInfrastructure - Arlene Allen

They have not met since our last meeting.

The North Hall Data Center project remains on track for a November 2011 completion.

Campus Vice Chancellors received an email from UCOP VP Bostrom talking about a shared data center, specifically SDSC.  Grants will buy big clusters and run out of space.  Davis was feeling space pressure, and was planning to move everything out of their machine room and move it to SDSC, and others were getting ready to go, when they discovered that each campus has different models for paying for infrastructure e.g., power.  SDSC wanted customers to pay for power.  UCOP VP Bostrom says that UCOP will pay for people to move their servers to SDSC, to get around different campus funding models.  Erase disincentives.  He wants every campus to put 10 racks of equipment in SDSC by this summer!  ITLC talked about this 5 years ago.  Three years ago when campuses had space problems, UCSD got a Sun Box, while others were looking at shipping containers.  ITLC designed a plan (including Operational Maintenance Plan (OMP)) for regional co-location, which could be a UC-wide OE initiative.  But SDSC didn't want to pay for other's racks of servers.  The servers consume as much electricity as the cost of the servers every two years.  So that effort ground to a halt.  The current memo was issued with ITLC encouragement, but the 10 racks was a surprise.  OIST is placing a headend rack down there, which should have SANS, VMWARE, secure ftp, and secure shell.  Now we need 9 more racks to go.  We are interested in ideas or thoughts of who might be interested in free rack space down in SDSC.  ITLC needs to develop a long-term plan for data centers.  This might turn into a UC cloud.  Is it time to create virtual private cloud?  The near term issue of interest - does anyone know of a researcher who would be willing to locate their servers at SDSC?  They'll have remote virtual data center, which will allow you to spawn multiply virtual machines.  The plan is for the network space to support both sdsc and ucsb.edu domain.  This is a good idea for disaster design.  In practical  terms don't forklift existing stuff, probably targeting new installations.  How does this work with NHDC?  There will be several different locations.  We will eventually fill North Hall.  Parallel in NH.  Some stuff where it lives today.  Things that you aren't required to touch, SDSC great option.  Great option for Disaster Recovery.  Co-lo requires more planning.  That's why OIST is building a “head-end” make it a scale issue.  If have new rack what is the impetus to use SDSC vs. NHDC.  Predict that for certain use cases SDSC may be preferable to NHDC.  What about expanding use of OIST virtual systems?  Looking at virtual system, and need to aid and abet what people do.  OIST needs to create a service to help them place equipment.  10 by end of the year, or all bets are off. 

ITLC Subcommittee Oracle Coordination Group - there will be stuff posted on it.ucsb.edu .  This is a coordination group trying to gather as much information from the campuses to feed strategic sourcing and relay information back.  This includes Sun.

Project Reports - a brief report or location where projects will be located

Financial Information System (FiS) - Doug Drury

Student Information System (SiS) - Lubo Bojilov

They are now in the first phase – cloning mainframe and obfuscating data, enterprise security & networking, creating interface structure, and creating different standards.  They are trying to identify both code and data that isn't being used.  The data transformation will start next week.  They are rescheduling their meeting on Enterprise Security.  They are going through the process of identifying requirements with respect to IdM.  They have hired a 3rd party group to look at process requirements and architecture design.  There is a lot of work to do next year.  Ask James Kinneavy for an invite to their Enterprise Security presentation.  For the Enterprise Infrastructure update they are developing a 5 year plan to get there.  They are bringing in an outside consultant, Vantage, to vet ptheir lans.  All code is automatically converted, and they are working at the re-integration points, and the vendor is working on screens.  There will be some useability improvements.  They plan on using their existing server room, but they need to look at DR/BC. 

Collaborate - Alan Moses

There was a DLIST announcement that IC has been merged into LSIT effective 5/1/2011.  This will allow them to leverage resources off each other, and to have one strategic plan.  Bill Koseluk will have a role of more college facing services for both LSIT & IC.  ?Directory of Campus Services?

Discussion Items

The IT Vendor Fair will be on May 4th from 10-4 in Corwin.  Hope to make this an opportunity to get information that is supposed to be made available to the campus.  Not coordinated with TAS or Strategic Sources.  Bill Koseluk will be spending more time with TAS. 

Cloud Summit at UCLA: This event included all UCs, USC and others.  Go to website and you can listen to the videotaped talks.  Rich Wolski gave a general view of clouds vs. virtualization.  Fellow from Amazon.  Curt Salinas for administrative staff.  People are messing with clouds.  There will be a future grid at San Diego that you can sign up for that is the successor of Teragrid.  Go to http://aws.amazon.com/education  and request a grant to try their services out for a year.  Everyone looking to Amazon for this.  UC is undecided on policy, be careful what you are agreeing to you.  LBNL is big into clouds, and they are doing email through Google.  If a National Lab can do this, and not be concerned about security, what about the rest of us.  There was lots of talk of virtualization.  Now cloud offerings have HPC offerings.  $1/hour expensive, but that is where stuff is going to go.  Big use is bursty, e.g., mars rover can only communicate w/it for an hour and then don't need anything for 23 hours.  Another bursty application is Student registration.  Cloud vs. virtualization.  People seem willing to provide advice to other UC folk with this.  Videos going up soon.  AWS extra capacity how connect their cloud to your existing service.

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