[Beowulf] Multicore Is Bad News For Supercomputers

Prentice Bisbal prentice at ias.edu
Fri Dec 5 10:30:36 PST 2008

Vincent Diepeveen wrote:

> Very cheaply you can build nodes now with like 4 cheapo cpu's
> and 128 GB ram inside.

Not exactly. 2 GB DIMMs are cheap, but as soon as you go to larger DIMMs
(4 GB, 8 GB, etc.), the price goes up exponentially.

Less than a year ago, we purchased a couple of server with 32 GB RAM. We
then wanted to purchase one with 64 GB RAM. The cost of the system
tripled! Instead, we bought 3 more 32 GB systems.

Dell and others advertise systems that support up to 128 GB RAM, but I
have yet to meet someone who can afford to put all 128 GB RAM in a
single box.


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