HPC, Virtualization and Random Thoughts

Posts
  • Stop Climate Change?! – Part 2

    I have been investigating some more in the area of Green IT, S+S. Some ideas and a lot of questions have come to mind. Please read on and let me know if they make any sense. By the way, Part 1 is here :-) 1. How do you understand the status quo...
  • I'll be there in 2 microseconds!

    Fantastic news! Mellanox has released the beta 2 version of their WinIB 1.4 stack , which works with HPC Server 2008 beta 2 and has Network Direct providers for their latest ConnectX cards. The results announced at ISC 08 are outstanding: - 2 microseconds...
  • Teched session on HPC in top 20!

    Phil Pennington and I presented a session on cluster performance optimization at Teched 2008 in Orlando. It made it in the top 20 list by customer satisfaction!!! To all those who were there and voted for us: Thank you!!! To all those who were not...
  • How fast is this thing, really?!

    Microsoft entered the HPC market a couple of years ago with a value proposition based on ease of integration, use and management. The comment we received most often sounded more or less like this: "This is all well and good, but how fast is this...
  • A Hybrid OS Cluster Solution

    Thomas Varlet, of Microsoft France, and Dr. Patrice Calegari, of BULL SAS, have written an excellent paper on how to build hybrid clusters, i.e. clusters where 2 or more operating systems can be run at the same time. It is recommended reading, in my opinion...
  • UK HPC User Group Meeting

    The UK HPC user group is meeting in London on June 26th, for what promises to be an interesting day at the Imperial War Museum. This meeting is intended for customers, partners and developers to “meet and mingle”, compare notes and provide Microsoft with...
  • Webcasts Again!

    Hey all, I'm doing another series of webcasts. 2 of them have already been aired, two more will happen shortly. Here are the topics: - deployment and management - high availability - new scheduler features - hpc server 2008 and linux You'll find a link...
  • Affinity

    Did you notice that the latest CTP has introduced a new option for mpiexec? Using mpiexec -affinity you can affinitize the mpi rank to the core where it is started, thus avoiding context switches. Your application will determine whether you actually benefit...
  • 4x4 and other quick tips

    I've recently been involved in a simple benchmarking exercise. Here are a few quick "rules of thumb" that have helped me: - 4x4 A PCIe 4x slot is supposed to have 4 lanes capable of 250 MB/s each, for a total of 1 GB/s. An Infiniband SDR 4x card has 4...
  • HPC & Movies

    In my last post I investigated how HPC can be used to build UFOs. This time, I've learned to my surprise that HPC can be used to make movies! Digital media production follows a complex workflow, from initial sketch to wireframe model, to rendered 3D images...
  • Interested in HPC? How about UFOs?

    To many people HPC is like UFOs: We there's somebody somewhere, but we don't really know what they're doing and where they fit in the grand scheme of things. Here's my attempt at explaining them (UFOs AND HPC). Happy reading . If you think I've...
  • Seriously, Technet Edge is for professionals!

    We do like our jobs and are serious professionals, you know!! Special Announcement for TechNet Edge Visitors
  • Infiniband on HPC Server 2008 - again

    After I published a document about the installation of Mellanox Infiniband on Server 2008, I have received some good feedback that deserves sharing. Note that: The WinIB 1.4 beta available for download today on Mellanox's web site does not work with...
  • HPC Server 2008 webcasts - again!

    Hello again, I'll be doing a series of webcasts soon, hopefully on the feature-complete beta 2 of HPC Server 2008. They will be mostly demonstrations, with a few slides for those concepts that are not evident in the software. Here is the schedule (all...
  • Free Software from Microsoft? I cannot believe it!

    But it is true! We have about 20 not-for-resale copies of Windows Compute Cluster Server 2003 SP1. If you want one, please register as a community member on windowshpc.net and send a note to volker.will(at)microsoft.com. The license terms will allow you...
  • Mellanox Infiniband on HPC Server 2008

    One would assume that Infiniband on Windows is just going to be as easy as any other plug and play device installation. Well, in some cases it is. When you have some old cards and an old switch, no documentation, both not supported any longer and in an...
  • HPC "Jumpstart" in Washington DC

    We're organizing a 1-day introduction to Windows HPC Server 2008 in Washington, DC on March 18th 2008. This will be followed  by a 1-day "hpc clinic", where you'll have the opportunity to discuss your particular project with us. For more...
  • Hyper-V and Server 2008 RTM

    With general availability of Windows Server 2008 Microsoft ships the beta 1 release of Windows Virtualization or Hyper-V (aka. Viridian). Customers, partners, developers, IT Professionals, everyone buying a copy of Windows Server 2008 will have the opportunity...
  • HPC Server 2008 screencasts available

    I had promised that I would do a series of screencasts illustrating different aspects of HPC Server 2008. Well, here they are: http://edge.technet.com/tags/hpc. The first two on deployment and job submission have been posted. The rest will come soon...
  • Windows Server 2008 High-Availability Clusters

    It is no secret that HPC Server 2008 will offer the option to make the head node of a HPC cluster highly available. This feature is not in beta 1, but it is being developed. It will exploit fail-over mechanisms provided by Server 2008 (enterprise edition...
  • HPC Server 2008 webcasts

    My introductory demo / webcast on HPC Server 2008 beta 1 has been recorded. It can now be viewed here . I have received feedback from several people about it, requesting instructions to build the virtual machines I used and to repeat the demos. Hence...
  • Windows HPC Server 2008 Webcast

    Want to find out what's new in Windows HPC Server 2008 and what exactly is "High Productivity Computing"? Join usfor an exciting look into Windows HPC Server 2008. We’ll take you on a tour of this new version of Windows Compute Cluster Server, highlighting...
  • HPC in Action - Bioinformatics

    Ever played with the "game of life"? Well, here's an example of the real thing: HPC used to study evolution and cellular dynamics. Bioinformatics is an interesting - if unusual - field of application. Computation and visualization go hand in hand, as...
  • Dual-boot Linux and HPC Server 2008

    In the past few weeks I had the pleasure of working with UGS, a division of Siemens that develops engineering product lifecycle management solutions. They were looking for a way to dual-boot an existing Linux cluster into Windows. The process we came...
  • Windows HPC Server 2008

    The software previously known as Compute Cluster Server v2 is now available in beta 1 on http://connect.microsoft.com HPC Server 2008 contains some pretty significant innovations. I'll summarize them here and then produce some more detailed entries on...