The second service pack to the HPC Pack 2008 R2 software is now available!

This update includes a number of great new features, including

  • Enhanced Azure capabilities, such as adding Azure VM nodes to your cluster, creating Azure node configuration scripts, and supporting Remote Desktop connections
  • Ability to run MPI-based applications in Azure
  • Job scheduling support through a REST interface and an IIS-hosted web portal
  • A new job scheduling policy that uses 'resource pools' to ensure compute access to different user groups
  • SOA improvements, such as in-process broker support for increased speed, and a new common data staging feature
  • and all the 'normal' service pack stability improvements

For more information on those, and other, new features available in Service Pack 2 please see our documentation on TechNet.

The single SP2 installer applies to both Express and Enterprise installations, as well as the standalone 'Client Utilites' and 'MS-MPI' packages. You can download it from the Microsoft Download Center.

An important note is that this service pack can not be uninstalled by itself. Uninstalling the service pack will also uninstall the HPC Pack itself, so you'll need to take a full backup (including the sql databases) before installation if you want to be able to 'roll back.'

If you do not have an HPC Pack 2008 R2 cluster, you can download a free Windows HPC Server 2008 R2 evaluation version. Before you install, you can try out the new Installation Preparation Wizard which can help analyze your environment for common issues and provide some best practice guidance to help ensure an easy HPC cluster setup. 

Let us know your thoughts over on our Windows HPC discussion forums.