What Is a Virtual Organization (VO)?

Virtual Organization

A Virtual Organization (VO) is a set of groups or individuals defined by some common cyber-infrastructure need. This can be a scientific experiment, a university campus or a distributed research effort. A VO represents all its members and their common needs in a grid environment. A VO also includes the group's computing/storage resources and services. We typically use the terms site, computing element (CE), and/or storage element (SE) to refer to the resources owned and operated by a VO.

OSG brings together many VOs for contracted and/or opportunistic sharing of resources in a grid environment, allowing for more effective use of their collective resources. Use of resources at a site is determined by a combination of the site's local policies and the user VO's policies. VOs are responsible for contracting individually with each other for guaranteed access to resources.

Many VOs in the OSG address the specific requirements of their users with their own user support that provides more in-depth help than the OSG does (current VO list). Additionally some VOs provide dedicated resources to the OSG that provide preferred access to their members. Some VOs provide a problem specific user interface to their members.

The OSG assumes that each user is preferably supported by their membership VO. Each VO is expected to register with the OSG and provide support for their members. OSG support is maintained through a VO representative for each VO rather than a member of a VO.

The OSG welcomes researchers that are not associated with a VO! They are welcome to join the OSG or Engage VO. The OSG VO is inviting all users who don't need support running their application on the OSG. The Engage VO provides strong support for scientists who wish to bring their applications to the grid but who are unfamiliar with grid technologies.

hand If you don't know what VO you belong to or should belong to, we suggest doing that before moving on, email the Grid Operations Center for help.

-- JamesWeichel - 03 Jan 2012

Topic revision: r10 - 06 Dec 2016 - 18:12:39 - KyleGross
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