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September 21, 2007
Here's a collection of highlights, selected totally subjectively, from this week's HPC news stream as reported at insideHPC.com and HPCwire.
>>10 words and a link
High-level .NET libraries for data-parallel computation;
NEC and Sun join forces on HPC services;
IDF: Harpertown due November 12;
IDF: Nehalem - 16 threads and QPI;
HPC companies working hard to win Wall Street's continued love;
World Community Grid runs world's largest anti-virus program;
SDSC Pegs Astrophysicist Norman to Bring in NSF Track 2c;
PSC announces Executive Director;
>>PNNL to install Cray XMT
Cray announced this week (http://investors.cray.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=98390&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1053229&highlight=) that the Department of Energy's (DOE) Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) has taken delivery of the first Cray XMT supercomputer (or at least the first publicly admitted one).
The XMT processors can execute 128 threads in hardware, which makes the system ideal for many data intensive computing applications. The XMT is a follow on to Cray's previous MTA systems, of which only a few were ever sold.
>>Intel Gets Cozy With FPGAs
Not to be left out of the FPGA acceleration party, Intel has teamed up with Altera and XtremeData to deliver a Xeon-friendly version of FPGA coprocessing. The XD2000i module consists of three Stratix III FGPAs hooked onto Intel's front side bus (FSB). From the Altera press release (http://www.altera.com/corporate/news_room/releases/products/nr-altxdatafsb.html?f=hp&k=wn3):
"With today's release of the XD2000i, it's an exciting time for the industry," said Ravi Chandran, CEO of XtremeData. "Using Altera's Stratix III FPGA, the XD2000i delivers up to five times the logic capacity of previous generations of ISAs. Additionally, it offers unparalleled double-precision floating performance per watt, the key benchmark requested by our customers in high-performance computing and financial analytics."
Nallatech and Mitrionics have also announced an FPGA-FSB solution, in this case, with Xilinx hardware. The press release is at http://www.mitrionics.com/default.asp?pid=6&iid=54.
These are the first instances of FPGA coprocessing for an Intel platform. XtremeData as well as DRC Computer Corp. and Celoxica have similar offerings for AMD's HyperTransport technology.
>>AMD's tri-core processor
The Inquirer has a story on AMD's reported tri-core processor (http://www.theinquirer.net/default.aspx?article=42369). Seems like this is NOT just a salvage strategy:
AMD is probably doing this for two reasons; the lesser being salvage, the more important one being that Intel can't do it. Intel would have a far harder time making a tri-core part until Nehalem next September -- it is easy to fuse off a core, far harder to MCM disparate cores.
The Inquirer goes on to say that Hector (Ruiz) and the rest of the AMD boys are learning a thing or two from the ATI crowd:
...it seems AMD is learning from ATI. Most non-top SKU GPUs are simply top SKU die with features turned off, and if you look at the success of people unlocking that, you will see that it is far more than salvage.
>>New Opterons not very powerful. Enough for some?
Last week, TechReport.com released the first thorough review of AMD's Barcelona two-way quad-core CPUs (http://techreport.com/articles.x/13176), including a comparison with Intel's Clovertown chips. In terms of absolute performance, they conclude:
Barcelona's gains in performance per clock aren't quite what we expected, especially in floating-point-intensive applications like 3D rendering, where it looks for all the world like a quad-core K8. As a result, Barcelona is sometimes faster, sometimes slower, and oftentimes the equal of Intel's Core microarchitecture, MHz for MHz.
That's bad news for AMD, considering 1) the current top clock-speed option is 2/3 of Intel's, and 2) they're more than a year behind Intel in manufacturing technology (Intel's 45nm Penryn quad-core chips are just around the corner). However:
...power-efficient performance is the new key to processors, especially in the server space. By that standard, AMD now has the lead. By any measure -- and we have several, including idle power, peak power, and a couple of energy use metrics -- the quad-core Opterons trump Intel's quad-core Xeons.
The Xeon platform's FB-DIMM memory consumption seems to be the major factor holding it back compared to Barcelona, as well as Xeon's comparatively high power drain at idle. Any way you look at the findings, it should be nice as a consumer to know that the CPU market remains highly competitive.
May 16, 2013 |
When it comes to cloud, long distances mean unacceptably high latencies. Researchers from the University of Bonn in Germany examined those latency issues of doing CFD modeling in the cloud by utilizing a common CFD and its utilization in HPC instance types including both CPU and GPU cores of Amazon EC2.
May 15, 2013 |
Supercomputers at the Department of Energy’s National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) have worked on important computational problems such as collapse of the atomic state, the optimization of chemical catalysts, and now modeling popping bubbles.
May 10, 2013 |
Program provides cash awards up to $10,000 for the best open-source end-user applications deployed on 100G network.
May 09, 2013 |
The Japanese government has revealed its plans to best its previous K Computer efforts with what they hope will be the first exascale system...
May 08, 2013 |
For engineers looking to leverage high-performance computing, the accessibility of a cloud-based approach is a powerful draw, but there are costs that may not be readily apparent.
05/10/2013 | Cleversafe, Cray, DDN, NetApp, & Panasas | From Wall Street to Hollywood, drug discovery to homeland security, companies and organizations of all sizes and stripes are coming face to face with the challenges – and opportunities – afforded by Big Data. Before anyone can utilize these extraordinary data repositories, however, they must first harness and manage their data stores, and do so utilizing technologies that underscore affordability, security, and scalability.
04/15/2013 | Bull | “50% of HPC users say their largest jobs scale to 120 cores or less.” How about yours? Are your codes ready to take advantage of today’s and tomorrow’s ultra-parallel HPC systems? Download this White Paper by Analysts Intersect360 Research to see what Bull and Intel’s Center for Excellence in Parallel Programming can do for your codes.
In this demonstration of SGI DMF ZeroWatt disk solution, Dr. Eng Lim Goh, SGI CTO, discusses a function of SGI DMF software to reduce costs and power consumption in an exascale (Big Data) storage datacenter.
The Cray CS300-AC cluster supercomputer offers energy efficient, air-cooled design based on modular, industry-standard platforms featuring the latest processor and network technologies and a wide range of datacenter cooling requirements.