[Beowulf] New Tri-Labs cluster running QLogic HCAs/switches

Tom Elken tom.elken at qlogic.com
Mon Jun 20 12:11:21 PDT 2011

> -----Original Message-----
> From: beowulf-bounces at beowulf.org [mailto:beowulf-bounces at beowulf.org]
> On Behalf Of Mark Hahn
> > http://www.hpcwire.com/hpcwire/2011-06-
> 17/qlogic_wins_major_deployment_in_nnsa%27s_tri-labs_cluster.html
> "...was the result of a highly competitive evaluation and benchmarking
> process
> that involved all major InfiniBand interconnect vendors."
> would be awesome to read the benchmark results -
> does anyone know where to look?

The results are not published anywhere, nor will they be since they were run on pre-production hardware covered by NDAs.  But I can provide some background on the benchmarks and the decision process.

The TLCC2 RFP asked responders to provide ...
" the compute node delivered MPI bandwidth, latency and messaging throughput benchmarks over IBA 4x QDR (or faster) HCA attached to PCIe2 (or faster) buss between two nodes utilizing 1 MPI task/node, 1 MPI task/socket and 1 MPI task/core on each node."

QLogic provided these benchmark results to the OEMs/resellers that were bidding using the following benchmarks: osu_mbw_mr (the OSU Micro-Benchmark's Multi-bandwidth, Message Rate test) osu_multi_lat (Multiple latency: single or parallel latency tests between two nodes), LLNL's SQMR (Sequoia Message Rate) and osu_bw (OSU bandwidth).

But some of the most important benchmarks were run later, in the final stages of making an interconnect decision, on a test cluster using the Intel Sandy Bridge CPUs with both QLogic and the competition's IB HCAs and switches.  So the only difference was the IB hardware and the SW stacks to support them.  To make their decision, the Tri-labs looked at technical risks, schedule risks, and ran their synthetic workload benchmarks (which also contained the microbenchmarks mentioned) on the test cluster to evaluate functionality, performance, and stability to help make their decision.

-Tom Elken

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