Maastricht University

Advancing Maastricht University’s data management with Ceph

About Maastricht University

Industry & location .

The University of Maastricht (UM), also referred to as Maastricht University, is the most international university in The Netherlands and, with nearly 22,000 students and 4,400 employees. The university distinguishes itself with its innovative education model, international character and multidisciplinary approach to research and education.

Product & service .

Thanks to its high-quality research and education, as well as a strong focus on social engagement, UM has quickly built a solid reputation. By fostering a collaborative and inclusive environment, UM not only enhances the learning experience but also contributes significantly to societal progress. Today, it is considered one of the best young universities in the world.

Mission .

The University of Maastricht has two primary objectives: conducting research and educating students. The university consists of six faculties, each dedicated to these goals: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Faculty of Health, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience, Faculty of Science and Engineering, and Faculty of Business and Economics.

The challenges

Growing data management

Maastricht University faced the significant challenge of efficiently managing an increasing volume of research data. The rapidly expanding data demands necessitated the implementation of a scalable and reliable IT solution to ensure the maintenance of research productivity and data integrity.

Diverse university community

The university's community includes 25,000 students and 4,500 staff members, with half engaged in research and teaching. This diverse and active community underscores the need for a robust data management system to support both educational and research activities.

Infrastructure upgrade

The existing infrastructure had to be upgraded to handle the growing needs. By enhancing the infrastructure, the university aimed to provide a more robust and reliable foundation for its academic and research activities, ensuring that both students and faculty have access to the necessary tools.

Existing Ceph solution

While the current Ceph storage solution was effective, it needed some improvements in scalability, support, and integration. Enhancements were essential to meet the university's expanding requirements and integrate seamlessly with the already existing systems.

Commitment to FAIR principles

The university is committed to the FAIR data principles, ensuring data is Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable. Collaboration with a hospital for health-related research further emphasized the need for a reliable and compliant data management system.

Advanced storage solution

The scenario highlighted the urgent need for an advanced storage solution. This solution needed to ensure data integrity, support extensive research activities, and be adaptable to future technological advancements, ensuring the university remains at the forefront of research innovation.

The solutions

Efficient expert guidance

The partnership with 42on enabled the blending of technical execution with valuable knowledge exchange. 42on's expertise not only facilitated a smooth migration but also empowered the university's IT team with deeper insights into Ceph's capabilities. The process was characterised by intensive collaboration, with discussions extending into late hours, showcasing a shared commitment to overcoming challenges and ensuring a successful implementation and migration. This effort laid a robust foundation for the university's future data management and storage needs.

Transition to Ceph storage

The solution for the University of Maastricht was to transition to Ceph for its data storage. This transition marked a strategic move towards enhancing scalability, flexibility, and cost-efficiency. This shift was initialised because of the discontinuation of support for their previous system. The university, recognizing the need for expert guidance, partnered with 42on for the migration. This collaboration, constisting of expert consultancy, entailed detailed planning and a thorough cost-benefit analysis and ultimately resulted in choosing Cephadm for its manageability and scalability.

- Chris Kuipers, Linux Engineer Maastricht University

The results

Support with 42on

With a team of knowledgeable professionals, the university now experiences streamlined resolution processes. This skilled support enables swift and effective management of any arising issues. This in turn, further optimizes their system's performance.

Strengthening reliability

The migration to Ceph has significantly improved Maastricht University's data management capabilities. The system's reliability and support have been enhanced, reducing basic troubleshooting issues and allowing the IT team to focus on more strategic aspects.

Overcoming migration challenges

Despite facing challenges like configuration adjustments and extended timelines during the migration, the benefits of increased storage capacity and flexibility became evident, demonstrating the move's strategic choice as well as overall value.

Commitment to innovation and excellence

Looking ahead, Maastricht University plans to continue using Ceph for data storage and management. This decision aligns with the university's dedication to innovative research and education, ensuring a top-tier technological environment for its community.

- Chris Kuipers, Linux Engineer Maastricht University

About 42on

42on supports Ceph teams with the complete operation of Ceph clusters by providing Consultancy, Training, Emergency Assistance, and Managed Services.

Discover how we can help you!

Why choose 42on as your partner for your open-source infrastructure?

Genuine commitment

42on's passion for open source, particularly Ceph, is not just a statement but a core ethos. Actively engaged in the Ceph and related open source communities, our contributions to GitHub, tech blogs and events showcase our enthusiastic involvement

Vendor agnostic approach

We avoid vendor lock-in and work together with clients that use open source or subscribed Ceph. This vendor-agnostic approach ensures clients have the freedom to choose their preferred vendor while benefiting from 42on's expert support and guidance.

Control tailored to your preferences

We understand that every business has unique needs. Therefore, we provide a range of services that allow you to customize your level of control. You can choose to maintain complete control or delegate tasks as you see fit.