[Beowulf] Advice on 4 CPU node configurations

Prentice Bisbal prentice at ias.edu
Wed Feb 9 06:38:50 PST 2011

I don't think Numascale/ScaleMP has much of a cost advantage anymore.

About 6 months ago, I purchased a couple of Dell PowerEdge R815s with
128 GB of RAM and 32 cores. We looked at similar RAM configurations a
couple of years ago. and the cost premium for that much RAM was
prohibitive (the price for additional RAM seemed to go up exponentially
with the amount of RAM) so we stayed at 32 GB.  This time around, the
premium for the additional RAM seemed marginal. Not sure how large you
can go and keep that "marginal" relationship, but it's much larger than
it was a couple of years ago.

And don't forget to figure in the cost of the interconnect. I don't know
what Numascale requires, but ScaleMP require IB, which can add
significant costs if you don't have an existing IB fabric to use.


Douglas Eadline wrote:
> Although I wrote about the SMP and the Numascale hardware,
> I have not yet had a chance to use it.
> To me there are two issues worth considering. First,
> if you need a big SMP this might be a low
> cost solution. Second, should your application
> not scale best in a node-based ccNuma system (ScaleMP
> or Numascale), MPI is still an option. Indeed, no need
> to rewrite the codes. And, management is probably
> much easier.
> Of course for large systems, clusters work best.
> --
> Doug
>> On Thu, 2011-02-03 at 09:45 +0000, Hearns, John wrote:
>>> Also look at ScaleMP and Numascale
>>> Here's a damn good article from Doug Eadline:
>>> http://www.linux-mag.com/id/7947
>>> I must admit though I don't know how far a budget of 30K takes you
>>> there!
>> My understanding is that the Numascale cards cost "a bit more" than IB
>> cards but you don't need a switch (it's a 3D taurus I think) so it would
>> be worth looking into.
>> Rob

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