Beowulfs can compete with Supercomputers [was Beowulf: A theorical approach]

David S. Greenberg dsg at
Thu Jun 22 15:17:50 PDT 2000

Thanks Greg, you made my description much clearer.
My point was that companies like HPTi will help you build a machine with the
attributes appropriate for your problem space as opposed to the traditional
supercomputer vendor who would help you change your applications to be
appropriate to their machine.
Who exactly does what portion of the design was not really my point but
rereading the post makes it seem that way.  The spectrum goes from do
everything yourself (pick components, do wiring, write drivers, load OS, etc.)
to get help customizing a system (tell someone about your apps and what you
know about how they work with various hardware and let them build you an
appropriate machine) to buy an off-the-shelf machine.   All points on this
spectrum can be met today with cluster technology.

Greg Lindahl wrote:

> > 2) Customize a stock design and get someone else to build it for you. There
> > are several small to mid-size companies which specialize in this. I've been
> > meaning to update my list (perhaps some readers will help).  The list
> includes
> > at least Altatech, Atlantec, Aspen, DCG,HPTi, Paralogic, TurboLinux,
> VALinux.
> In the case of HPTi and some of the other companies on this list, this is
> not quite right. HPTi provides appropriate solutions to solve your problem,
> just like a traditional supercomputer vendor. We do not encourage our
> customers to pick out which motherboard they like best; we prefer to take
> relevant benchmarks and then pick the right CPU, interconnect, and so forth
> to give you the biggest bang for your $. Our design space is general purpose
> enough that it fits what most people want out of a supercomputer.
> -- greg

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