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October 14, 2009
SAN JOSE, Calif., Oct. 14 -- Clustercorp today announced the immediate availability of Rocks+Hybrid, a combination of the commercial version of the Rocks Cluster Distribution for Linux and Microsoft Windows HPC Server 2008. The solution is a simple-to-use product for deploying dual-boot HPC systems that run Linux and Windows natively in a single cluster.
Prior to the Rocks+Hybrid solution, the installation and management of a dual-boot cluster included a long, costly process in which the end user or a deployment team would have to install and configure dual-boot servers by hand. The minimum setup time for these systems could take at least a week or longer to complete. As more hardware vendors look to ship dual-boot hybrid systems, the need for a supported and robust cluster platform that is easy to deploy, manage, and operate has become essential.
"Rocks has a long history of demonstrating leadership in the HPC cluster management space and Microsoft is pleased to have worked with Clustercorp to bring Windows HPC Server 2008 together with Rocks+," said Vince Mendillo, senior director of High Performance Computing Marketing at Microsoft. "With this offering, the Rocks community now has a simpler and more automated way to implement powerful clustering capabilities using Windows HPC Server 2008, while also receiving the familiar ease-of-use and cost efficiency benefits of Windows."
"Clustercorp is thrilled to add Rocks+Hybrid to our line of Rocks+ products," said Tim McIntire, President and Co-Founder of Clustercorp. "It was extremely important for Clustercorp to retain the design foundations of Rocks in this solution -- Rocks+ has always been known for making clusters easy to manage and maintain -- hybrid cluster users can now experience this first-hand."
In a hybrid environment, the Rocks+ head node provides the same services as in a homogeneous Rocks+ environment. The Rocks+ standard node discovery process is largely unchanged, except that when a hybrid node is discovered, the system is automatically configured for the dual-boot nature of the hybrid nodes. Newly discovered nodes will install both Linux and Windows operating systems onto the local drive without user intervention, then return to running Rocks+ at the end of the install process – ready to run end-user applications in either operating system.
Rocks+ also enables continued management and maintenance of hybrid clusters with Windows HPC Server. Rocks+ uses an end-to-end Linux-Windows deployment scheme any time a change is made to the stack, which means nodes are set in a known good state. This allows for simple maintenance, upgrades, and even push-button replacements of failed nodes. Adding a node to a Rocks+Hybrid cluster is as simple as powering the server on with it set to PXE (network) boot.
"We are delighted to see Clustercorp and Microsoft collaborate on a hybrid version of Rocks+ and Windows HPC Server 2008," said Philip Papadopoulos, PhD, head of the Rocks project at the University of California, San Diego. "Interoperability with the leading Linux cluster distribution helps Microsoft broaden their reach, and brings simple cluster solutions to a new audience."
Mixed, dual-boot clusters can improve cluster efficiency. Because dual-boot clusters flexibly serve both Linux and Windows users, they increase utilization rates by expanding the number of addressable users. The first Rocks+Hybrid cluster was deployed on the Holland Computing Center's 2,300 CPU Cluster in the Peter Kiewit Institute. Among a number of leading technology partners that have announced hybrid cluster support for Rocks+ and Windows HPC Server 2008 is Adaptive Computing Inc, who worked closely with Clustercorp to integrate optional support for the Moab Cluster Suite into Rocks+Hybrid.
Supercomputing 2009, Portland, Oregon
Learn more about Rocks+Hybrid by visiting Clustercorp's booth at Supercomputing 2009 (Booth 238), or by joining Clustercorp for a hosted dinner on Thursday, Nov 18th at the show. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Clustercorp is the home of Rocks+, which adds a vastly expanded software layer and enterprise-class support to the leading open source cluster distribution (Rocks) to create a production-ready cluster operating environment. Clustercorp partners with the industry's leading ISVs to offer Rocks+MOAB, Rocks+LSF, Rocks+SGE, and more (look for Rocks+Viz and Rocks+Hybrid at Supercomputing 2009). You can purchase turnkey Rocks+ clusters from a long list of reliable hardware partners including Dell, Cray, Silicon Mechanics, and more. More information can be found at http://www.clustercorp.com.
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