[Beowulf] Re: GPU boards and cluster servers.

Robert G. Brown rgb at phy.duke.edu
Fri Sep 5 11:29:02 EDT 2008


On Fri, 5 Sep 2008, Gerry Creager wrote:

> At $6k US, and requiring me to get Vista, I'd rather build a system starting 
> with, e.g., an Asus motherboard.  I save one-third the price and I don't have 
> to file the environmental impact statement on the flawed OS.  I also get NICs 
> I can easily set to accommodate Jumbo Frames.

If you talk to a Dell rep, you can ALMOST invariably get any
server-class system they sell without an operating system or with Linux
installed, especially if you are ordering in quantity.

Just FYI -- otherwise I don't disagree with anything you said,
especially Vista of Evil.  Although hey, it runs great on 4 GB and up
systems, at least if you don't run large applications on it... or so I'm
told.

    rgb

>
> gerry
>
> andrew holway wrote:
>> The new Dell R5400 Rackmount workstation is ideal for this. You can
>> slip two Xeons, 16GB ram and two chunky graphics cards in there.
>> 
>> ta
>> 
>> Andy
>> 
>> On Fri, Sep 5, 2008 at 6:06 AM, Li, Bo <libo at buaa.edu.cn> wrote:
>>> Hello,
>>> It seems your platform is more suitable for a cluster. Great, and when are
>>> the products available? And is there any software support from you?
>>> Regards,
>>> Li, Bo
>>> 
>>> ----- Original Message -----
>>> From: Maurice Hilarius
>>> To: Li, Bo
>>> Cc: kus at free.net ; i.kozin at dl.ac.uk ; Beowulf Mailing List
>>> Sent: Friday, September 05, 2008 9:36 AM
>>> Subject: GPU boards and cluster servers.
>>> Li, Bo wrote:
>>> 
>>> Hello,
>>> Is it too expensive for the platform?
>>> The easy solution is:
>>> And X48 level motherboard with CF support, about $150
>>> Q6600 Processor, about $170
>>> Two 4870X2 $1,100
>>> Two Seagate SATA Harddisk 500G for Raid1, about $140
>>> 4*2G DDR2 RAM, about $150
>>> PSU 1000W, about $200
>>> A big box, about $100
>>> 
>>> That's all, in total, $2,010.
>>> Regards,
>>> Li, Bo
>>> 
>>> True, to a point.
>>> Most people will not use a desktop board for a cluster.
>>> Too I/O bound.
>>> Finally the memory capacity of these desktop boards is pretty limiting.
>>> Typically 8GB maximum.
>>> 
>>> 
>>> Generally a XEON or Opteron chipset and CPUs will be the choice.
>>> 
>>> Also, for most GPU/FPU performance work, the memory bandwidth bottleneck 
>>> on
>>> the Intel product is too much of a negative factor.
>>> 
>>> Lastly, for clusters, most want a rackmount chassis.
>>> We developed a 2U designed for a server board and 2 GPU boards.
>>> The big challenge there is power.
>>> 
>>> We use dual 600W PSUs. One for motherboard, and one for dual GPU boards.
>>> 
>>> 
>>> --
>>> With our best regards,
>>> 
>>> Maurice W. Hilarius         Telephone: 01-780-456-9771
>>> Hard Data Ltd.                FAX:          01-780-456-9772
>>> 11060 - 166 Avenue         email:maurice at harddata.com
>>> Edmonton, AB, Canada         http://www.harddata.com/
>>>      T5X 1Y3
>>> 
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-- 
Robert G. Brown                            Phone(cell): 1-919-280-8443
Duke University Physics Dept, Box 90305
Durham, N.C. 27708-0305
Web: http://www.phy.duke.edu/~rgb
Book of Lilith Website: http://www.phy.duke.edu/~rgb/Lilith/Lilith.php
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