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September 22, 2009

Microsoft Snaps Up Interactive Supercomputing

Michael Feldman

Microsoft announced today that it has acquired the technology assets of Interactive Supercomputing (ISC), makers of the Star-P parallel programming suite. The revelation was made via a blog post by Kyril Faenov, GM of the High Performance & Parallel Computing Technologies group at Microsoft. Faenov said ISC CEO Bill Blake and some number of ISC employees would be joining Microsoft at the company’s New England Research & Development Center in Cambridge, Mass. As far as plans for the Star-P product, he had this to say:

We have recently begun plans to integrate ISC technologies into future versions of Microsoft products and will provide more information over the coming months on where and how that integration will occur. Beginning immediately, Microsoft will provide support for ISC’s current Star-P customers and we are committed to continually listening to customer needs as we develop the next generation of HPC and parallel computing technologies. I’m looking forward to the opportunities our two combined groups have to greatly improve the capability, performance, and accessibility of parallel computing and HPC technologies.

No terms of the acquisition were forthcoming.

UPDATE: According to the FAQ on the new ISC Web site, Microsoft will not be picking up the Interactive Supercomputing customer contracts (only support for a limited time). Microsoft will also halt all sales and future work on Star-P:

Effective with the closing date of this acquisition, Star P is no longer available to purchase. There will not be any future releases of Star P beyond the version 2.8 which was released by ISC earlier this year. The version 2.9 that was released to a few customers in Beta will not be released for production use by customers. Active Star P customers who are using earlier versions of Star P were granted the right to upgrade to 2.8 by ISC prior to the close of the transaction.

There will not be any future releases of Star P beyond the version 2.8 which was released by ISC earlier this year.

In essence, Microsoft has shut down the Star-P product line and looks to be only interested in the underlying technology and the people who developed it.