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High-Performance Computing for Researchers and Students with Amazon Lightsail for Research

AWS recently announced the general availability (GA) of Amazon Lightsail for Research, a new offering designed to enable researchers and students to easily create and manage high-performance CPU or GPU research computers on the cloud.

Amazon Lightsail for Research is an ideal solution for students and researchers who may not have access to dedicated computing resources or the technical expertise required to set up and manage a high-performance research environment. This new offering provides a simple and cost-effective way to leverage the power of the cloud for research and experimentation.

For instance, through the Lightsail for Research console, users can choose to create a virtual computer and create a new research computer. In addition, they can select which software to have preinstalled on their computer and what type of research computer. The service supports Jupyter, RStudio, Scilab, and VSCodium, and users can install additional packages and extensions through the interface of these IDE applications. 

Next, users can choose the desired virtual hardware type, including a fixed amount of compute (vCPUs or GPUs), memory (RAM), SSD-based storage volume (disk) space, and a monthly data transfer allowance. After that, bundles are charged on an hourly and on-demand basis.

And finally, after naming the computer, users can create a virtual computer, and once completed, click Launch application to start working.
Besides using the console, users could alternatively use the AWS Command Line Interface (CLI) or AWS SDKs to create a computer with preinstalled software and configuration.


Channy Yun, a principal developer advocate for AWS, explains in an AWS news blog post the benefits of Amazon Lightsail for Research:

You pay only for the duration the computers are in use and can delete them at any time. You can also use budgeting controls that can automatically stop your computer when it’s not in use. Lightsail for Research also includes all-inclusive prices of compute, storage, and data transfer, so you know exactly how much you will pay for the duration you use the research computer.

In addition, Swapnil Bhatkar, a cloud engineer at National Renewable Energy Laboratory, U.S Department of Energy, tweeted in response to the GA release of Amazon Lightsail for Research:

We built Stion a few years ago for the #cryoem community just for this purpose. Glad that AWS extended this concept of ‘one-click button to get a GPU machine’ for broader research community.

Currently, Amazon Lightsail for Research is available in the US East (Ohio), US West (Oregon), Asia Pacific (Mumbai), Asia Pacific (Seoul), Asia Pacific (Singapore), Asia Pacific (Sydney), Asia Pacific (Tokyo), Canada (Central), Europe (Frankfurt), Europe (Ireland), Europe (London), Europe (Paris), and Europe (Stockholm) Regions.

Lastly, more details on Amazon Lightsail for Research are available on the documentation pages.

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