Category Archives: Reviews

Fraunhofer File System (FhGFS): Solid, Fast, and Made in Europe

There are a lot of good research projects going on in Europe: if you didn’t hear about them, it is simply because they are not receiving the media attention they deserve. One of such projects is the Fraunhofer parallel file … Continue reading

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Using Eight Intel Xeon Phi Coprocessors for Asteroid Simulation

Colfax International is a US-based IT equipment and solution provider. What’s so special about them is that their web-based retail shop, Colfax Direct, lists thousands of items ready to be shipped, and all prices are available online, with no dumb … Continue reading

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AMD Promises Hybrid CPU+GPU Device with Uniform Memory Access

The idea of using graphics hardware to perform computations dates back to 1978. However, AMD claims that it was them who “kicked off the GPGPU revolution” in November 2006. What is really important is that it was standardisation that allowed … Continue reading

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Parallel NFS (pNFS): the War Is Close

Every Unix of Linux system administrator knows NFS, the Network File System, invented back in 1984. Its notable feature is a very simple syntax: mount server.example.com:/exported/tree /example/mountpoint This will mount the server’s directory “/exported/tree” on a local machine, making it … Continue reading

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Memory Bandwidth for Intel Xeon Phi (And Friends)

John D. McCalpin, Ph.D., informally known as “Dr. Bandwidth” for his invention of STREAM memory bandwidth benchmark, posted STREAM results for Intel Xeon Phi and two Xeon-based servers made by Dell (see the end of his blog entry). All three … Continue reading

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Finally, A Topology-Aware MPI Implementation

Good news from the Supercomputing-2012 (SC12) conference: ten collaborators (including a talented team led by Dr. Dhabaleswar K. Panda) presented a paper on a new approach for assigning processes to compute nodes in InfiniBand networks. Roughly, it works as follows: … Continue reading

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System-on-Wafer: Integrated Circuit Packaging Considered Harmful

Silicon wafers contain enormous numbers of microprocessors. For example, a typical 300 mm wafer, as used by Intel, can contain about 130 dies of Intel Core i7 “Sandy Bridge-E” CPUs (use the formula, Luke, and substitute S=435 mm² for a … Continue reading

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Intel MIC, aka Xeon Phi, aka Doubtful Creativity

They created a monster. It contains enough cores to be a computer on its own — yet it needs to be plugged into a “real” computer, and acts only as an accelerator. It’s cores are based on P54C architecture, introduced … Continue reading

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Globus Online, the Data Transfer Solution For Scientists

The February 2012 issue of the “Communications of the ACM” features an article by Bryce Allen et al., “Software as a service for data scientists” (or see PDF). The main idea of the article is as follows. The amount of … Continue reading

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