Guidance/suggestions for small (6-12 port) gigabit switches and gigabit NICs?

Michael T. Prinkey mprinkey at
Sat Sep 6 12:30:19 EDT 2003

On Sat, 6 Sep 2003, Douglas Eadline wrote:

> Mike, a few questions, if you do not mind kernel and driver versions,
> model of switch, motherboard?

2.4.18 for those results, I believe.  I saw about the same with 2.4.19.  
I haven't tested 2.4.20.  I used the tg3 drivers as packaged in the
kernel.  I used the e1000 drivers for the onboards.  I think the
motherboards were INTEL SE7500CW2.  CPUs were 2.4 GHz Xeons.  The 
switch was a DLink DGS1016T.  I have built 3 or 4 clusters using similar 
configurations.  More recent ones have used the Tyan Tiger i7501 
motherboard instead.

> Have you run the 302t's thought the switch or the intel's
> as xover? Just curious.
No.  I only had time to benchmark while I was burning the units in and 
didn't take the time to rewire the network.  Wanted to, but didn't find 

> Sounds like you are have built this machine to solve a
> specific type of problem. How is it working?

All of the clusters are running a commercial CFD package (the big one!)  
and are typically used for relatively small runs (2 to 16 CPUs).  For
these runs, principle axis decomposition is the default and about 98% of
the traffic crosses the low-latency nearest neighbor links.  For this
application, I think such a configuration is near optimal.  One day I hope
to have a long enough lead time on delivery to actually benchmark with and
without the xover links.  For now, my only performance metric is
anecdotal...I have several satisfied customers.


Mike Prinkey
Aeolus Research, Inc.

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