INSIGHTS

Graph 500, Green500, HPCC, and SPEC: Alternative benchmarks for high-performance computing

Supercomputers have become a vital part of almost any innovative project undertaken by collaborative teams in the developed world. Server clusters can be found anywhere from the offices of small businesses to compartments in U.S. Navy submarines. So which are the fastest supercomputers on earth? The usual measurement for high-performance computer (HPC) clusters is the TOP500 ranking, which is basedRead More

Cloud computing security

Tom’s Hardware featured an article last week which sought some general answers to the question of how to maximize security in the cloud. As more and more companies migrate their IT resources towards cloud-computing vendors such as Amazon Web Services, the issue of securing one’s data on somebody else’s machines has been rightly generating much attention. The article delineated fourRead More

GPU workstation sale (and other news) China builds the world's fastest supercomputer

After almost a year-long run, the Jaguar supercomputer at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee has relinquished its title as the world’s fastest computer. This honor now belongs to the Tianhe-1A supercomputer located in the National Supercomputing Center in Tianjin, China. Tianhe-1A is expected to officially become the leader of the TOP500.org list of the world’s fastest supercomputers sometime inRead More

OpenSFS formed to lead development of Lustre file system

OpenSFS (Open Scalable File Systems, Inc.), a non-profit corporation, has recently been formed to continue development of the Lustre file system alongside Oracle, which owns and maintains the Lustre code even though it is an open-source technology. Lustre has been and continues to be used by many high-performance clusters for managing storage systems. When Oracle acquired Sun Microsystems, the formerRead More

How a SAS switch can improve storage management

Last week, LSI announced their release of “the industry’s first 6Gb/s SAS switch”. The switch offers unique opportunities for cluster managers to improve the architecture of their storage systems. The value of the SAS switch is its function of transforming a cluster from a NAS (network-attached storage) structure into a DAS (direct-attached storage) structure. With DAS, storage data does notRead More

HPC and the life sciences

This week, a team from our company visited a large laboratory located in the Chicago area. IT representatives there told us how a major focus for them has been migrating their computing resources from a model of individual workgroups using separate clusters to a shared private cloud that all research teams in the facility can access for running their jobs.Read More

HPC and the Missing Middle in the Silicon Prairie

HPC in the Cloud, a very insightful and well-written blog, published an article titled “HPC 360 Highlights Manufacturing’s Missing Middle“. There, author Nicole Hemsoth describes how a sector of the U.S. economy is losing competitiveness because companies are failing to take advantage of new computing technology. This sector, called manufacturing’s “missing middle”, is comprised of the companies that furnish theRead More

Worldwide race heats up for HPC leadership

An article in Computer World by Patrick Thibodeau reports how David Turek, the vice-president of IBM, spoke last week about the growing emergence of China in the worldwide HPC competition. Turek said, “Within a year, there will be more Top500 systems in China than there are in Europe collectively.” China currently holds the claim to having built the second-fastest supercomputerRead More

Microsoft HPC Server 2008 R2 – cool new features

Yesterday, at an HPC conference for the financial industry, Microsoft announced an update (R2) for Windows HPC Server 2008. Aside from offering new features that will take advantage of innovations in cloud computing, Microsoft claims that this update will make HPC Server 2008 less expensive to operate than Linux. The reasoning, according to Microsoft, is that Linux requires much expensiveRead More

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