Simple re-instantiation of small databases using cloud computing

Tin Wee Tan*, Chao Xie, Mark De Silva, Kuan Siong Lim, C. Pawan K Patro, Shen Jean Lim, Kunde Ramamoorthy Govindarajan, Joo Chuan Tong, Khar Heng Choo, Shoba Ranganathan, Asif M. Khan

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalConference paperpeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)
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    Small bioinformatics databases, unlike institutionally funded large databases, are vulnerable to discontinuation and many reported in publications are no longer accessible. This leads to irreproducible scientific work and redundant effort, impeding the pace of scientific progress. We describe a Web-accessible system, available online at, for archival and future on demand re-instantiation of small databases within minutes. Depositors can rebuild their databases by downloading a Linux live operating system (, preinstalled with bioinformatics and UNIX tools. The database and its dependencies can be compressed into an ".lzm" file for deposition. End-users can search for archived databases and activate them on dynamically re-instantiated BioSlax instances, run as virtual machines over the two popular full virtualization standard cloud-computing platforms, Xen Hypervisor or vSphere. The system is adaptable to increasing demand for disk storage or computational load and allows database developers to use the re-instantiated databases for integration and development of new databases. Herein, we demonstrate that a relatively inexpensive solution can be implemented for archival of bioinformatics databases and their rapid re-instantiation should the live databases disappear.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article numberS13
    Pages (from-to)1-4
    Number of pages4
    JournalBMC Genomics
    Issue numberSuppl 5
    Publication statusPublished - 2013
    Event Twelfth International Conference on Bioinformatics - Taicang, China, Taicang
    Duration: 20 Sept 201322 Sept 2013

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