The release of the second beta for Windows HPC Server 2008 was announced on Microsoft’s Window Servers blog site over the weekend. Ryan Waite, Micrsoft’s Group Program Manager for HPC, says they signed off on the Beta 2 release last Friday. Windows HPC Server is the second rendition of the company’s original HPC offering, Microsoft Compute Cluster Server 2003, which was announced at SC06.
Waite gives a rundown on some of the new features they’ve added:
We checked in high availability for the head node and a new set of diagnostic tests to help people identify and troubleshoot their clusters. The new UI model is really coming together but for users more comfortable with command line interfaces we provide scripting support through COM and PowerShell. Finally, administrators can run administrative scripts in parallel across the cluster using our improved Clusrun feature.
A bunch of humbling (heh) usability testing pushed us to redesign the To Do List. It should be much easier for people to get through setting up a cluster, adding drivers to images, and configuring patching for the cluster (new feature!). The heat map is working so well we’ve thrown out our internal monitoring tools we use on Top500 runs.
He also mentions they’ve been using Beta 2 on some soon-to-be-named TOP500 supers, so expect Microsoft to stake claim to more elite systems on the upcoming June list. Finally, Waite notes some beta customers in computational finance and life sciences have been checking out the new SOA support in the new HPC Server offering.
Read the full post here.