University Loses Valuable Supercomputer Research After Backup Error Wipes 77 Terabytes of Data

Source: Gizmodo


Kyoto University, a top research institute in Japan, recently lost a whole bunch of research after its supercomputer system accidentally wiped out a whopping 77 terabytes of data during what was supposed to be a routine backup procedure.

That malfunction, which occurred sometime between Dec. 14 and Dec. 16, erased approximately 34 million files belonging to 14 different research groups that had been using the school’s supercomputing system. The university operates Hewlett Packard Cray computing systems and a DataDirect ExaScaler storage system—the likes of which can be utilized by research teams for various purposes.

It’s unclear what kind of files were specifically deleted or what caused the actual malfunction, though the school has said that the work of at least four different groups will not be able to be restored.

BleepingComputer, which originally reported on this incident, helpfully points out that supercomputing research is, uh, not super cheap, either—costing somewhere in the neighborhood of hundreds of dollars per hour to operate.