caGrid 1.1 represents another step in the evolution of caGrid to better address the requirements of the research community. It includes important new features and enhancements and is backwards compatible with the caGrid version 1.0. A detailed listing of the changes from caGrid 1.0 can be found in the release notes but some highlights include:
- Service Development and Deployment
caGrid 1.1 adds the ability to migrate caGrid 1.0 Introduce services to caGrid 1.1 services, and provides the migration framework to handle all such future migrations. Introduce also received numerous updates including the ability to self-update, better manage service security settings, and better support complex resource-based services, edit all service documentation directly from the tool, and JBoss deployment support. The Data Service component in caGrid 1.1 adds support for caCORE SDK versions 3.2 and 3.2.1, integration with Bulk Data Transfer, and an initial auditing framework. Additionally a full "training grid" was deployed and supported, and the ability to easily switch between grids (such as the production grid and the training grid).
- Usability Improvements
The client applications including Introduce, the security administration interface, and data service components, have a variety of usability related improvements, including layout, input validation, help systems, tooltips, and better error handling. The caGrid installer was completely overhauled and improved to simplify use and capabilities. It can now completely install and configure all prerequisites, caGrid itself, service containers, and all core caGrid services. Additionally, the start of a new Workflow user interface was developed to facilitate submission and monitoring of workflows.
caGrid 1.1 represents a major thrust to deploy the security infrastructure of caGrid, called the Grid Authentication and Authorization with Reliably Distributed Services (GAARDS), to the cancer research community, in that its release is timed and informed by the first set of policies and procedures created by the caBIG® Security Working Group. The Security Working Group is a collaborative effort of the caBIG® Architecture and Data Sharing and Intellectual Capital (DSIC) Workspaces that is intended to create and implement security policies to enable data sharing across the caBIG Federation. The initial policies in place for caGrid 1.1 formalize the envisioned Levels of Assurance for credentials in the grid, and detail the policies and practices of a credential provider adhering to the initial Level of Assurance (LOA1) which will govern the baseline credentials all caBIG® participants may use. Significant functional improvements to GAARDS include the ability to issue and manage host credentials, as well as the capability to leverage dedicated Hardware Security Modules (HSMs).
Building on the core and robust unit, system, and integration testing processes and infrastructure deployed in the development and release of caGrid 1.0, several hundred additional tests have been added throughout the development and release of caGrid 1.1. Interested users may view results of these tests on a centralized dashboard , execute these test frameworks locally, or leverage the testing framework during the development of their own services.