Electronic Payment System for Grid Services

T. Nissi and M. Silander (Finland)


Payment solution, grid computing, attribute certificates.


Although originally fostering the principle of free re source sharing, academia has identified the need for charg ing mechanisms for grid services offered in order to better control resource usage. Within the IT industry on the other hand, numerous initiatives are aiming at creating commer cial grid services. Both need payment systems but most of the available solutions are bespoke. We present a certificate based payment solution that requires no modification of existing middleware APIs. This transparency guarantees seamless operation with deployed, non-payment aware grid infrastructures and enables hence the simultaneous and interchangeable use of free and paid for grid services. GridBank, the central component in our prototype implementation, both issues and redeems digi tally signed cheques. The only common nominator being certificate based authentication allows GridBank to be inte grated not only to grid middleware but also to any software infrastructure leveraging X.509 certificates for authentica tion. We compare our solution to other existing payment solutions for grids, describe its detailed architecture and conclude by analysing its features, strengths and weak nesses.

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