Sahil Tikale

Systems Researcher, PhD Candidate

About Me

I am a systems researcher with interest in designing, building and evaluation of cloud-scale-systems. My research focuses on efficiency of multiplexing bare-metal servers at-scale in a multi-cloud environment. Currently, I am building a multi-provider cloud that uses market based economics models for resource allocation within a co-located data-center.

I have over 7 years of experience managing 24/7 critical IT-infrastructure for clients in Banking, Government and Research sector in India, Singapore and the USA.

Systems designed as a part of my research

Hardware Isolation Layer (HIL)

HIL is a fundamental new layer in the data-center designed to isolate and allocate bare-metal servers between different provisioning systems (eg, SLURM, OpenStack, Spark etc)

HIL lets you allocate and deallocate hardware resources elastically that can be provisioned to deploy software using any provisioning system of your choice. HIL is

  • Secure: Nodes are network isolated and ownership managed by HIL.
  • Compatible: OpenStack Ironic, MaaS, Foreman, BMI, etc
  • Extensible: Driver based models for switches and authentication system.
  • Switches: Dell, Cisco, Brocade, Juniper.
  • Services: Keystone authentication


More Projects coming soon

Will add more projects shortly.

All systems are designed as micro-services using opensource technologies that can be extended or/and modified to suite specific purposes. Note - All systems were built as a team effort in collaboration with others.


Boston University

Ph.D. Candidate
Computer Engineering
Advisor - Prof. Orran Krieger

2014 - 2021 (Expected)

Thesis Prospectus: Bare-metal Marketplace at the bottom of the cloud

  • Systems Researcher: Mass Open Cloud
  • Project Mentor: Project based approach towards teaching agile methodologies, test driven development and principles of microservice architecture.
    • EC 528 Cloud Computing: A Baremetal Marketplace, team of 4 graduate students
    • EC 500 Cloud Computing: Integration of Quads with HIL. team of 5 graduate students
    • EC 528 Cloud Computing: Auditing as a Service, team of 4 graduate students
  • Teaching Assistant:
    • CS103: Introduction of Internet Technologies and Web Programming
    • CS111: Introduction to Computer Science - I (Python programming course)
    • EC440: Introduction to Operating Systems

Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

M.S. Information Systems

2008 - 2010

Masters Thesis: Modifications for the Knowledge File System (KFS) for Personal Information Management (PIM) on Mobile Devices

L. D. College Of Engg., Gujarat University

B.Engg. Rubber Technology

1999 - 2003
Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India

  • 3 Gold Medals
  • 11 Merit Certificates for scoring highest per subject.
  • Precetex Award for best overall academic performance, including best seminar and best final year project


  • Amin Mosayyebzadeh, Apoorve Mohan, Sahil Tikale, Mania Abdi, Nabil Schear, Trammell Hudson, Charles Munson, Larry Rudolph, Gene Cooperman, Peter Desnoyers, Orran Krieger “Supporting security sensitive tenants in a bare-metal cloud ”, USENIX Annual Technical Conference (ATC 19), 2019
  • Apoorve Mohan, Ata Turk, Ravi S Gudimetla, Sahil Tikale, Jason Hennesey, Ugur Kaynar, Gene Cooperman, Peter Desnoyers, Orran Krieger “M2: Malleable Metal as a Service” IEEE International Conference on Cloud Engineering, IC2E 2018
  • Amin Mosayyebzadeh, Gerardo Ravago, Apoorve Mohan, Ali Raza, Sahil Tikale, Nabil Schear, Trammell Hudson, Jason Hennessey, Naved Ansari, Kyle Hogan, Charles Munson, Larry Rudolph, Gene Cooperman, Peter Desnoyers, Orran Krieger “A secure cloud with minimal provider trust” 10th {USENIX} Workshop on Hot Topics in Cloud Computing (HotCloud 18), 2018
  • Jason Hennessey, Sahil Tikale , Ata Turk, Emine Ugur Kaynar, Chris Hill, Peter Desnoyers, Orran Krieger, “HIL: Designing an Exokernel for the Data Center.” In Proceedings of the Seventh ACM Symposium on Cloud Computing, 155–168. SoCC 2016
  • Turk Ata, Ravi S. Gudimetla, Emine Ugur Kaynar, Jason Hennessey, Sahil Tikale, Peter Desnoyers, Orran Krieger, “An Experiment on Bare-Metal BigData Provisioning” USENIX HotCloud 2016
  • Tikale Sahil, Mike Reavey,Laura Kamfonik, Quentin Li, Ian Denhardt, Jason Hennessey,and Orran Krieger. “Recursive Hardware-as-a-Service (rHaaS) and Fast Provisioning”, Poster presented at Graduate Research Symposium 2015,


Red Hat Inc.,

Research Intern

Full time (Summer 2017, 2018)
Part time (Fall 2017, Spring 2018)
Boston, USA

Red Hat delivers hardened, open source solutions that make it easier for enterprises to work across platforms and environments, from the core datacenter to the network edge.

  • Integrated QUADS – an internal system used at Red Hat to share a common pool of hardware resources for scalability testing with HIL. Thereby increasing the capability of QUADS to manage wide variety hardware.
  • Wrote Juniper driver for HIL to support production environment of QUADS at RedHat.
  • Developed a OpenVswitch driver for HIL to support a continuous integration environment for virtual deployment testing for QUADS and HIL
  • Did prelimnary work towards developing adaptable reservation system to be included in QUADS.

Mechanobiology Institute (MBI)

Senior Systems Engineer

August 2010 - June 2014 (4 Years)

The Mechanobiology Institute (MBI) is a Research Centre of Excellence hosted at the National University of Singapore.

  • Designed and implemented a centralized storage solution connecting high end microscopes to HPC clusters. It resulted in significant reduction in post-processing latency. Increased availability of research data across multiple computing platforms without unnecessary duplication.
  • Designed, implemented and managed an in-house single sign-on solution supporting more than 300 researchers.
  • Developed batch uploading module for OpenFreezer – an open source information management system for biological laboratories.
  • Created an in-house accounting solution to track the usage of compute and storage resources on daily basis using open source technologies.
  • Accomplished storage reorganization of over 140 TB of critical data with least downtime possible.
  • Evaluated new open-source technologies before assimilating into existing suite of services.
  • Conducted training and capacity building sessions for staff and researchers for using the computational infrastructure.
  • Regularly worked with different research groups to understand their requirements.
  • IT-Infrastructure:
    • Servers: OpenSuse Linux servers, SGI ICE HPC cluster
    • Switches: Juniper 4200, 3300 and Core switch 8208
    • Storage: DDN Storage, CxFS, Fraunhofer Parallel Filesystem
    • Applications: Samba, openLDAP, mysql, Ganglia monitoring system, PBSpro batch scheduler
    • Scripting: Bash, Python, C

NCS Pte Ltd.

Systems Consultant
Client - Central Provident Fund Board of Singapore

July 2009 - August 2010 (1 Years)

NCS is the leading information, communications and technology (ICT) service provider in Singapore. They deliver end-to-end ICT solutions to government and enterprises.

  • Served as single point of contact (24/7) for administration and troubleshooting support for more than 60 Solaris 10 Zones and Servers.
  • Conducted training and capacity building for colleagues to support UNIX based servers and services.
  • Volunteered to learn new storage backup technology thereby supporting backups for more than 200 UNIX & Windows servers.
  • Managed transition between legacy and modern backup technologies by coordinating efforts with vendors and client stakeholders.
  • Implemented measures for business continuity including backup/restore procedures & disaster recovery plan.
  • Involved in incident management as per ITIL guidelines.
  • Planned downtime to roll out system changes and security patches.
  • Maintained up to date documentation of systems and services.
  • IT-infrastructure:
    • Servers: Solaris 10, Windows Servers
    • Storage: EMC Avamar Backup
    • scripting: Bash scripting

3i-Infotech Ltd.

Systems Consultant
Client - ICICI Bank Ltd.

July 2006 - July 2008 (2 Years)
Mumbai, INDIA

Headquartered in Mumbai, India, 3i Infotech is an IT services company with over 4000 employees in 30 offices across 15 countries and over 1000+ clients in more than 50 countries across 4 continents.

  • Managed a 24X7 critical and heterogeneous production environment for the largest private bank of India.
  • Responsibilities included from full life-cycle administration (from commissioning, racking, cabling, installing and hardening to daily administration and backup) of over 360 physical servers (flavors of UNIX) connected via SAN/NAS to multiple storage products from various vendors like EMC, IBM, Netapp etc
  • Planned and conducted a live storage migration of a critical database (> 1TiB) under stringent time pressure.
  • Promoted to shift in-charge heading a team of 4 engineers in a span of 18 months.
  • IT-Infrastructure:
    • Servers: Solaris-9-10, AIX, RHEL
    • Storage: Veritas Volume Manager, Linux Volume Manager, EMC-[Clarion;DMX-3,Celera-NS80], NetApp, HP-[XP12K,XP1024], IBM-DS4800-02, etc
    • Scripting: Bash