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Cloud Data Centre launched at HEC

ISLAMABAD: To facilitate universities in becoming part of the world-class research
 
environment, the Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Ahsan Iqbal on
 
Thursday inaugurated the Cloud Data Centre at Higher Education Commission (HEC). 
 
This data centre will provide services like Virtual Data Centres (VDC), Virtual Desktop
 
Infrastructure (VDI), Safe Campus Central Solution and Central Surveillance, Unified
 
Communication and Shared Services, Storage as a Service, and Training as a Service. HEC’s
 
Cloud services aim at increasing efficiency, productivity and collaboration between the
 
universities of Pakistan and reduce costs by using an optimised IT infrastructure.
 
The minister was accompanied by Ambassador of China Sun Weidong, HEC Chairman Dr.
 
Mukhtar Ahmed and HEC Executive Director Dr. Arshad Ali. Vice chancellors of various public
 
and private sector universities and other notables were also present at the inauguration ceremony.
 
In view of the rise of internet and web-based technologies as more strategic tools than ever
 
before, HEC has established the centre to improve productivity, enhance business processes, and
 
accelerate change. Data centres are the strategic focus of IT efforts to protect, optimise and grow
 
the business.
 
Speaking on the occasion, Ahsan Iqbal, congratulated HEC on the launch of centre and termed it
 
the backbone of infrastructural and technological development of universities in the current
 
digital age. “It is our responsibility to provide our new generation with good learning
 
opportunities, as we have to make the country an Asian Tiger under Vision 2025 by joining the
 
world’s top 25 economies.”
 
Reiterating the resolve to strengthen universities, he said that innovation has become a
 
‘currency’, adding that innovation requires creativity and it is the universities where creativity
 
comes from. “Turning around a country is a complicated and challenging process, but it is not an
 
impossible journey,” the minister stressed.
 
The minister said that the 21st century is the century of economic ideologies and Pakistan needs
 
to overcome its political instability to make economic uplift. He said that the nation need to
 
follow the slogan of ‘Working harder, better and smarter’ to strengthen its economic muscle.
 
In his opening remarks, Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed said that the launch of Cloud Data Centre is a way
 
forward to realizing the HEC dream of linking up universities through fast and effective
 
technologies. He said that HEC is committed to facilitating the universities for the welfare of
 
society and the socio-economic uplift of the country. Following the establishment of Cloud Data
 
Centre, he announced, the HEC is planning to set up R&D Centre in the near future.
 
Appreciating Huawei Technologies for donating building for the new Data Centre, Dr. Mukhtar
 
Ahmed said that the HEC-Huawei joint endeavours started back in 2006, adding that since then,
 
the two sides have been working on various initiatives for the promotion of technological
 
advancement in Pakistan. He said that under an agreement between HEC and Huawei, the latter
 
would train people in the new technologies that will be introduced.
 
Director General IT for HEC Anwar Amjad briefed the audience about the goals set for the
 
coming years and narrated the history of technological development initiatives of HEC. He also
 
described the salient features of Cloud Data Centre, a modular data centre, which has a total of
 
20,000 cores (CPU), 20 BP storage capacity, 30 TB RAM, 100,000 VDI and 5000 Could V-
 
Hosts.
 
Earlier, the Huawei Technologies was engaged for deployment of state-of- the-art Modular Data
 
Centre based on Hybrid Cloud on leading technologies. The facility will extend a rich and
 
collaborative platform to Higher Education Institutes for hosting their services over the offered
 
infrastructure and research collaboration platform locally in Pakistan.

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