Mary Jo Foley writes that here are a number of new technologies in the latest service pack for Windows HPC Server, but there’s one key promised component that’s not: Dryad, an ongoing research project at Microsoft Research for a general purpose runtime for execution of data parallel applications:
“HPC Server 2008 R2 SP2 adds tighter integration with Windows Azure and Microsoft’s high-performance clusters running on-premises. It also provides direct integration between HPC Server 2008 R2 and the Azure programming interfaces, paving the way for “a single set of management tools for both local compute nodes and Windows Azure compute instances,”according to a new Windows Azure team blog post. There’s also now a tuned MPI (Message Passing Interface) stack for the Windows Azure network, support for Windows Azure VM role (which is currently in beta), and automatic configuration of the Windows Azure Connect preview to allow Windows Azure based applications to reach back to enterprise file server and license servers via virtual private networks, according to the HPC SP2 post. And there are new features enabling better on-premises clustering in SP2.
But one piece of technology that doesn’t seem to have made it into SP2 is the Microsoft Dryad technology (which is going by the official name “LINQ to HPC”). Dryad, which is Microsoft’s Hadoop and Google MapReduce competitor, is going to get a second beta “in the coming days,” according to the aforementioned blog post.
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