Portage, Compute Canada (CC) and the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) are collaborating to provide a scalable federated platform for digital research data management (RDM) and discovery. They are pleased to announce that the Federated Research Data Repository (FRDR) service has finished Beta and is now in Limited Production.
The Limited Production version of FRDR will have many of the features and user interface design expected for full launch. Data deposit is currently limited to a select number of invited researchers who will help us to refine our curation and operational service models over the next few months.
A demo version of the FRDR site is available for training and testing purposes. The FRDR demo can be used to learn about the platform's search and data deposit features. As much as possible, the demo will be kept up-to-date with the latest version of the FRDR platform. Please note that all data deposited into the demo will be considered "test" data and will only be available temporarily.
FRDR will address a longstanding gap in Canada's research infrastructure by providing a single platform from which research data can be ingested, curated, preserved, discovered, cited and shared.
The platform's federated search tool will provide a focal point to discover and access Canadian research data, while the range of services provided by FRDR will help researchers store and manage their data, preserve their research for future use, and comply with institutional and funding agency data management requirements.
Lee Wilson, Portage Service Manager, oversees the FRDR service.
The Steering Committee for the project comprises representation from Compute Canada and CARL Portage:
The development and operations team consists of the core team from the University of Saskatchewan:
Special thanks to Keith Jeffrey, the former Project Manager, who has since retired. Special thanks to Umar Qasim, University of Alberta, who was part of the original steering committee.
Data submitted to FRDR is housed on Compute Canada managed infrastructure at the University of Victoria, BC or at the University of Waterloo, ON. Research data submitted to FRDR does not leave Canada.
The metadata related to datasets is housed in a database the University of Victoria. Most of that metadata is shared with Globus, running on Amazon Web Services services in the USA, to be indexed and made available for discovering datasets. Certain metadata fields, for example, submitter contact information, are not shared with Globus.
FRDR makes extensive use of tools operated by Globus. Globus is a non-profit project out of the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory. Globus is a partner in the delivery of the FRDR service and provided the following statement:
The Globus service is hosted on infrastructure provided by Amazon Web Services. The system components are encapsulated in Virtual Private Clouds (VPCs) and use security groups, which allow for the provisioning of logically isolated sections of the Amazon cloud. Globus Connect Server is installed on file systems owned and controlled by the institution or researcher, such as campus storage resources or personal computers, creating a Globus endpoint. Files managed by Globus are accessible only to authorized users, as defined by the permissions set by the endpoint administrator. The endpoint administrator can further control access by configuring Globus to explicitly deny or restrict access to specific parts of the filesystem. All communication with the Globus service is SSL protected and encrypted, and data transfer is optionally encrypted by the user. Research data never flow through Globus, but are transferred directly between the source and destination systems. Globus Auth provides identity and access management by brokering authentication and authorization between identity providers, resource services, and clients. Users authenticate via Globus Auth using their existing credentials from a trusted identity provider, e.g. their campus username and password. Because Globus Auth acts as an identity broker and uses federated login, institutional credentials are not sent to Globus.