[Beowulf] Multicore Is Bad News For Supercomputers

Prentice Bisbal prentice at ias.edu
Fri Dec 5 11:31:15 PST 2008

Joe Landman wrote:
> Prentice Bisbal wrote:
>> Vincent Diepeveen wrote:
>>> Very cheaply you can build nodes now with like 4 cheapo cpu's
>>> and 128 GB ram inside.
>> Not exactly. 2 GB DIMMs are cheap, but as soon as you go to larger DIMMs
>> (4 GB, 8 GB, etc.), the price goes up exponentially.
>> Less than a year ago, we purchased a couple of server with 32 GB RAM. We
>> then wanted to purchase one with 64 GB RAM. The cost of the system
>> tripled! Instead, we bought 3 more 32 GB systems.
> The cost of 64GB went down quite recently.  We have sold quite a few of
> these at this size due to memory cost drops.
My experience was 6-9 months ago.
>> Dell and others advertise systems that support up to 128 GB RAM, but I
>> have yet to meet someone who can afford to put all 128 GB RAM in a
>> single box.
> We have seen a few.  Its not as expensive as you think.  256 GB ... yeah
> thats more.
> And again, if you don't mind a quick plug for ScaleMP (we are not
> currently a reseller of theirs, we make no money from them), you can tie
> a few machines together (various constraints) with lower cost
> memory/components, and get some nice sized single system images.  Of
> course YMMV.

Funny you mention ScaleMP. I was thinking the same thing, but forgot to
mention it in my last e-mail. I was talking to them at SC08. about that
sort of thing. I wonder of cost of ScaleMP is less than large RAM premium.


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