In mid-March I had an email show up in the insideHPC news hopper with a pointer to news that the University of Oxford had just installed a new cluster from Streamline Computing (a division of Concurrent Thinking, an HPC vendor in the UK).
The High Performance Computing (HPC) cluster was implemented by Streamline Computing and provides over 4TFlops of peak performance across the Dell SC1435 & R905 computing nodes based on AMD quad-core processor technology.
Fairly standard news, though I wasn’t clear on the size of the system so I sent back an email asking about that (the answer: there are 68 compute nodes (8 cores per node) plus a head node & redundant head node as well as 5 X 4 socket SMP nodes all distributed across 3 racks). I was also intrigued by another paragraph in the release
To date, just 6 months after commissioning, the cluster has executed nearly 2 million jobs, ranging from those that take just a few 10s of minutes to those that are still executing since the day the machine was made available to users.
I was curious to know if there had really been jobs executing since day 1 without interruption, or whether someone had simply misunderstood something along the way (writing a press release often looks like a big game of telephone), and so I also asked about that line.
Turns out that, yes, at the time of this release the system has indeed been running jobs since day one. I know this isn’t a huge machine, but that’s still pretty impressive. HPC that “just works” is a big part of penetrating the low end market. Good job.