Topics for the Fast-Paced Life of High Performance Cluster Computing - HPC RSS Feed


Scripting in HPC Using Python: Part 1 - Quick Introduction - 06-07-2010


A new blog series by Dr. Jeff Layton & Dr. Glen Otero overviewing Python, addressing tools/extensions/add-ons that are available, as well as unique aspects of Python to HPC.

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Jeff & Glen


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PetaFLOPS for the Common Man (Pt 5- Problems with PetaFLOPS Scale Systems) - 03-31-2010


This article discusses three topics that encompass not all, but a good portion of the issues surrounding PetaFLOPS class systems today.
1. Power
2. Programming
3. Failure Rate

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Jeff


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PetaFLOPS for the Common Man (Pt 4- What could Hybrid PetaFLOPS Systems Look Like) - 03-24-2010

This blog examines the use of hybrid systems using GPUs (Graphical Processing Units) to achieve PetaFLOPS level of performance.

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Jeff


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PetaFLOPS for the Common Man (Pt 3- In the next few years, what could PetaFLOPS systems look like?) - 03-10-2010


It’s definitely not cheap or easy to reach PetaFLOPS today. This article examines what PetaFLOPS systems might look like today and in the near future using CPUs.

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Jeff


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02-24-2010 -- PetaFLOPS for the Common Man (Pt 2- What do current PetaFLOPS systems look like?)


To borrow a line from one of my favorite movies, “PetaFLOPS systems…. What do they look like?” (bonus points if you can tell me which movie this is based upon). PetaFLOPS systems currently exist and are in production. So how what do these systems look like and how did we reach PetaFLOPS?

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Jeff


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02-16-2010 -- PetaFLOPS for the Common Man (Pt 1- Who Needs PetaFLOPS & Why?)

The next section in a series of articles discussing PetaFLOPS level systems. This blog discusses a logical question regarding PetaFLOPS, “who needs that kind of performance?” To many people, particularly outside of HPC, this question is one of curiosity, sometimes akin to “what do people need more than one computer”? The answer may surprise you.

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Jeff

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01-22-2010 -- PetaFLOPS for the Common Man (Introduction)

This is the first in a series of articles discussing PetaFLOPS level systems – where we today, where are we headed, what will PetaFLOPS systems look like in the next few years, what kind of technologies are we likely to see in these systems, and what kind of problems are likely to be encountered.

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Jeff

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SC09 Perspective

11/15/2009

Before everyone got knee deep into the HPC extravaganza that is SC, I wanted to provide a little perspective. That is, the show isn't about the largest system(s) in the world, it's about being the most productive - solving problems, making discoveries, generating understanding.

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Jeff

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Nehalem and Memory Configurations

4/8/2009

The Intel Xeon 5500 (Nehalem)-based systems bring a whole new level of memory bandwidth to the HPC party. But the new architecture brings with it some options that allow you to trade memory price, memory performance, and memory capacity. I want to spend a little bit of time reviewing various memory configuration options and their impact on memory bandwidth.

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Jeff

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Introduction to Nehalem-EP

4/6/2009

I think you’ve heard by now that Intel has released a new processor, the Xeon 5500 (code-named Nehalem-EP). While the consumer version of this processor has been released as the Core i7, this is the server version of the processor. It is a sea change for Intel processors for a number of reasons that I want to present.

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Jeff

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File System Aging – What You Don’t Know

2/19/2009

We all get old and as a result we slow down. What many people don’t know is that as file systems age, they get slower as well. Just as people are different, so are file systems. Some age gracefully and still perform well, while others age quickly and performance tanks very fast. This applies to any file system but somehow it goes unnoticed for parallel file systems in the HPCC world. In this blog I want to discuss this and warn people to carefully examine their options.

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Jeff

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Great Tips on SSDs

2/18/2009

There is a new article at PC Perspective that talks about the really hot Intel SSDs. But it goes beyond a normal review and gets into some of the guts of SSDs and talks about an important topic - file system performance as it ages. So, I want to write about the review and point out the file system aging problems (which I will write about later).

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Jeff
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How Well Do You Know Your Data?

1/20/2009

If you are sensing a pattern to some of my blogs, you are probably correct. One of the reasons I write so much about HPCC storage is that this is one of the biggest headaches for HPC right now. I hope everyone is learning something from these articles/blogs.

In this blog I want to talk about knowing your current storage and its behavior. Storage almost seems to be alive in the respect that it grows every day (“It’s alive!”). Files are created, sometimes deleted, accessed, etc. However, how well do you truly know how your storage behaves? How many files are created every day? How many are deleted? How many are accessed?

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Jeff

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Things You Didn’t Know About Solid-State Disks (SSDs)
1/7/2009

I’m sure pretty much everyone has heard about SSDs. They are the current technology rave in storage. They have, as their name suggests, no moving parts. They use NAND for storing data, much like flash drives. What makes them so attractive is:

  • They have no moving parts, so you can drop them without losing data (as long as they don’t smash).
  • Theoretically, they use less power than a typical hard drive.
  • They can have better performance than standard hard drives (IOPS and throughput).

Therefore, it’s fairly evident that SSDs are the subject of so much development, investment, and curiosity.

In this blog, I want to tell you a bit about SSDs, focusing on aspects of them that you probably didn’t know. More importantly, I want to point out their current problems and limitations that you probably didn’t know about (TANSTAFFL).

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Jeff
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