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June 17, 2013

HPC Storage – Deliver Solutions Faster to Market in Today’s Economy

Nicole Hemsoth

Being competitive in today’s economy means companies need to accelerate the time it takes to go from concepts to profitable products and services. There is no shortage of new services, novel methods and innovations to help solve the problems we face; yet, to affect real change, faster market solutions need to be pragmatic and affordable.   

As an example, high-performance computing (HPC) has the potential to reduce the time it takes to sequence DNA from a month down to a day. This shortens the front-end time it takes to get vital information into chemical analysis, and could one day help doctors shorten the time it takes to complete a clinical diagnosis from weeks down to just a few days. However, to achieve this vision, HPC storage bottlenecks have to be removed from compute clusters.

The general-purpose network storage available today, while easy to implement, cannot keep up with the throughput demanded by the compute side; adding more compute power does not accomplish much, when storage continues to act as a bottleneck. Some high-end HPC storage solutions could in theory address the performance bottleneck but are either too costly or too difficult to implement and manage. 

Without a viable mid-range HPC storage solution, the ability to cost-effectively proliferate rapid diagnosis and improve health outcomes will be limited.  Numerous other market changing innovations will remain concepts, without affordable, high performance HPC storage capable to satisfy the data intensive needs of commercial breakthrough simulation and modeling applications.

ClusterStor 1500, the newest member of the Xyratex ClusterStor family of scale-out HPC storage solutions, is an easy to manage, turnkey-engineered Lustre solution for mid-range technical computing users.  ClusterStor 1500 is designed to deliver no compromise performance and data capacity scalability in an affordable and remarkably compact integrated scale-out solution. 

ClusterStor 1500 enables parallel data access to attain significantly enhanced data processing throughput efficiency, far exceeding limitations associated to legacy mid-range solutions relying solely upon serial data access via Network File System (NFS).  This can be of great value in cost-effectively addressing commercial high resolution simulation and life sciences applications. ClusterStor 1500 features include:

  • A unique architecture that brings together what were previously discrete server, network and storage platforms with their own separate software layers into a single integrated, modular, scale-out storage building block. This innovative approach enables the system to scale both performance and capacity while reducing administrative overhead.
  • Reduced hardware complexity with increased reliability, availability and serviceability.
  • The ability to scale performance from 1.25GB/s to 110GB/s and raw capacity from 42TB to 7.3PB.
  • The Lustre® file system, the industry’s most scalable and proven high performance open source parallel file system. 
  • Simplified deployment in hours, not weeks, allowing users to be productive and realize the value from their investment immediately. 
  • Proactive and comprehensive storage solution support, including assistance with setup, installation and performance optimization.
  • ClusterStor Manager, a comprehensive system management application that consolidates management of the entire storage cluster infrastructure, RAID data protection layer, operating system and Lustre into a single-pane-of-glass, easy-to-use administrator interface. 

The affordable ClusterStor 1500 enables pragmatic commercial, academic and life sciences computing applications to attain faster job completion, higher job iteration rates and more precise insights with higher resolution accuracy.

Interested in finding out more information on Xyratex HPC storage products and solutions? Come see us at http://www.xyratex.com/products/hpc-big-data and don’t forget to check back with us from time to time to see what’s new.