Optimizing Performance for Diverse Computing Requirements

When you have as many as 600 different projects and 6,000+ diverse users, how do you implement a supercomputing solution to address such a broad range of applications? How do you optimize the code performance across the grand variations? Based on challenging requirements like this, Cray developed the XCTM series supercomputers to support differing processor technologies in the same architecture. By leveraging the advantages of both multicore and many-core devices, these hybrid Cray systems can target the most appropriate technologies to get the best possible performance out of differing applications. With this in mind, Cray has delivered its insightful software tool stack with its highest-performing XCTM supercomputer configuration to ... [ Read More ]

[Infographic] Risk Management & HPC

In the post-2008 credit crisis world, risk evaluation by financial institutions has steadily increased in demand and complexity. Where large banks once performed risk analysis on a monthly basis, they’re now performing these calculations at least daily, if not in near-real-time. Cray makes this possible with the embedded Aries network, which eliminates the performance and latency issues of more traditional “fat tree” approaches, as well as the DataWarp™ applications I/O accelerator which effectively removes data access bottlenecks. See the infographic below for a look at Cray’s approach compared to legacy approaches – and to understand the difference in value.   ... [ Read More ]

5 Predictions of Where Supercomputing is Heading in 2016

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From new processor technologies to quantum computing, 2016 promises to be another exciting year for supercomputing. Here are five predictions as to how the industry will push ahead in 2016:    The year of progress in new processor technologies There are a number of exciting technologies we should see in 2016, and a leader will be Intel’s next-generation Xeon Phi coprocessor – a hybrid between an accelerator and general purpose processor. This new class of processors will have a large impact on the industry with its innovative design that combines a many-core architecture with general-purpose productivity. Cray, for example, will be delivering Intel Xeon Phi processors with some of our largest systems, including those going to Los ... [ Read More ]

Top 5 Blog Posts From 2015

Happy New Year! Check out some of the top blog posts from 2015: Why Do Better Forecasts Matter? Meteorologists have been striving to increase the accuracy of their work since the first weather forecasts were issued in the mid-19th century by pioneers such as Robert FitzRoy. In the 1950s and 1960s, the development of computers and observational technologies enabled forecast generation using the numerical weather prediction theories of Vilhelm Bjerknes and Lewis Fry Richardson. Today the numerical models that support our weather and climate forecasts are true “grand challenge” problems, requiring on the order of 10,000 billion (1016) mathematical operations and the exchange of 150 billion (1.5 x 1014) bytes of information to generate a ... [ Read More ]

Scratching an Itch: Mitigating HPC Scratch Bottlenecks

“I have a simple philosophy. Fill what's empty. Empty what's full. And scratch where it itches.” - Alice Roosevelt Longworth When one orchestrates HPC operations, scratch space often comes to the fore as a limiting factor that is often too small, big or slow. Many types of jobs — seismic, life sciences, financial services, etc. — don’t do all their work purely in memory. Each of many workers loads an initial configuration and reads/writes many intermediate points to scratch storage — often shared — before the total job completes. What can easily happen is that huge I/O problems replace huge computational problems as bottlenecks shift, and scratch management is a common issue. Traditional HPC systems often have local storage on each ... [ Read More ]