The Center for Cloud and Autonomic Computing (CAC) pursues research and development in cloud and autonomic computing methods and the application of those methods to systems of interest to industry and government partners. CAC's mission is to advance the knowledge of how to design cloud and autonomic computing systems - that is, computers that are capable of self-healing, self-protecting, and self-optimizing themselves with little involvement of users or system administrators.
At the intersection of cloud computing and autonomic computing, CAC aims to achieve self-management capabilities within and across the layers of cloud computing systems and applications to enable independent operation, minimize cost and risk, accommodate complexity and uncertainty, and enable systems of systems with large numbers of components.
CAC activities on cloud computing cut across several layers of information technology (IT) systems, including: hardware platforms for computing, storage, and networking; design of data centers that aggregate platforms to provide cloud services; systems software and distributed computing middleware providing programming interfaces and management primitives within and across multiple cloud data centers; applications that leverage the on-demand and scalable nature of cloud platforms; and cybersecurity.
Autonomic computing engines and applications
Consolidated and virtualized data centers and clouds have become the dominant computing platforms in industry and research for enabling complex and compute-intensive applications. As scales, operating costs, and energy requirements increase, however, maximizing efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and utilization of these systems becomes paramount. Furthermore, the complexity of application workloads makes on-demand scalability critical. CAC is developing autonomic computing and applications frameworks that can support a wide range of applications.
CAC is developing networks that respond to dynamic network configurations while ensuring high performance, fault tolerance, and security, and integrating these networks with virtualization techniques to provide seamless peer connectivity to a wealth of applications.
Autonomic defense systems detect and protect against all types of network attacks. CAC has developed expertise through advanced modeling and deployment of real-world capable systems using autonomic methods for network threat assessment, mitigation, and defense.
CAC research in this area targets the development of a theoretical framework and a general methodology for autonomic power and performance management of high-performance distributed systems.
The explosive growth in scale and functionality of enterprise software systems and underlying IT infrastructures has resulted in complex systems whose control and timely management is rapidly exceeding human ability. CAC research in this area is dedicated to developing and integrating autonomic techniques for monitoring, modeling, configuring, controlling, and optimizing the behaviors of applications, services, and resources, to ensure their robust and resilient operation in the face of these challenges.
Virtualized data centers
CAC is working to develop self-monitoring and self-optimization techniques that, when applied to the management of virtualized containers, can lead to increased efficiencies in resource utilization and reduced costs of provisioning.