SCI vs Myrinet for Alpha

David Bremner bremner at unb.ca
Tue Aug 29 12:34:45 EDT 2000


I looked through the archives as best I could (Metaquestion: Is there
a better way to search the unified archives than google?) and found
an informative posting from Chris Worley, and some older discussion
(from 1997).

Having noticed that Dolphin now has supposedly support for Alpha (look
on www.alphanews.net for links), I wonder if there are
compelling reasons to consider SCI instead of Myrinet.

I am looking at about 8 2 proc UP2000 nodes (well, this is a separate
flamewar;-) ) or 16 DS10L's


The downsides as I see it are

    1) The drivers are not open source. Well, this is not just an 
    ideological issue for me; it seems like a bit  of a maintenence
    nightmare.

    2) At this size, the extra cost of the adapters more or less pays
    for a myrinet switch, so the switchless topology does not help
    much.  With 16 nodes, the advantage seems to tilt further to
    myrinet.  Also, I don't know about software prices, i.e. license
    fees for ScaliMPI

    3) The support for Myrinet on alpha seems much more mature.

Well, it sounds like my mind is made up, but I am really just starting
to investigate.





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