Select News

The news in this category has been selected by us because we thought it would be interestingto hard core cluster geeks. Of course, you don't have to be a cluster geek to read the news stories.

Intel has just released a program called Intel Cluster Ready. The initiative is an attempt to create a standard platform for ISVs to deliver software on clusters. It includes a piece of software called Cluster Checker that once run can certify the cluster environment (so that ISVs have a predictable software environment).

While this is a laudable goal, I wonder if it too Intel centric? A brief perusal of the specification seems to include and "Intel Wall" (Intel Compiler and MPI) that is required to meet the specification. I have not had time to read all the documents fully or try the software, so perhaps it is a bit more flexible.

Of course, it is not unreasonable to expect the specification to be Intel centric, but clusters, like open source, are about choice. Would an "Open Cluster" effort be more valuable to the community? What do you think?

Update: now folded into Linux Magazine site (fixed link).

Can't get enough of clusters? Check out this new website Today's HPC Clusters.. The new site offers insights on the HPC Cluster Market along with tips on building and managing clusters as well. Definitely give it look. You may recognize some of the simian writers as well.

The Shocking Rise of the Graphics Machines!

The popularity of graphics cards with their immensely powerful GPUs (Graphic Processing Units) are causing the HPC world to look at graphics card as the next big development. Today, NVIDIA announced a new product line called Tesla a GPU aimed squarely at the HPC market. Read on to find out more about Tesla line of products (with pictures).

Version 4.2 of the GCC tool-set was just released. This release includes OpenMP which is an Application Program Interface (API) for shared-memory parallel programming in C/C++ and Fortran. OpenMP is jointly defined by a group of major computer hardware and software vendors and is a portable, scalable model that gives shared-memory parallel programmers a simple and flexible interface for developing parallel applications. While OpenMP has been around for a while, the growth of multi-core processors has made tools like OpenMP valuable to software developers. OpenMP provides a series of directives that can be added as comments to existing programs (i.e. it is easier than threaded programming). The inclusion of OpenMP into the GNU tool-set should help with multi-core programming, but it is not an effective way to create codes that use a distributed memory model (like clusters). MPI is still the best method for this kind of programming. Hybrid programming, OpenMP used on multi-core nodes and MPI used to communicate between nodes is certainly possible. Any takers?
intel -see links on Slashdot,39042972,62021390,00.htm AMD - Comparison: Cell - sedongara paper


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