[Beowulf] Roadrunner shutdown

Hearns, John john.hearns at mclaren.com
Wed Apr 3 01:27:37 PDT 2013

The reason according to Paul Henning (who was involved with its design
at LANL) was:


# it was running for over five years which is about the cost/benefit
# tipping pt for #hpc systems.

In my experience, I would agree with that.
Normal maintenance contracts cover three years, and of course vendors will extend them.
At about that timeframe though:

Parts become more difficult to source
The OS which was int he original install is probably getting old - so do you re0image the whole thing, or consider its replacement?
Disk drives are larger - so the storage is looking small now
The server room investment in fit-out, electrical feeds and cooling is still functioning - you have to start asking if the floor
space is better used on another system.
Fit-out in a server room will outlast several generations of HPC kit.

Class, discuss

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