PITTSBURGH, Supercomputing 2004, Nov. 8, 2004 HP today announced a
comprehensive package of hardware, software and services that significantly
boosts the performance and functionality of clusters - while reducing their
complexity - for high-performance computing (HPC) customers.
The HP Unified Cluster Portfolio, which includes two new entry-level HP
Integrity servers and an enhanced version of HP StorageWorks Scalable File
Share, is a new family of pre-configured, pre-tested cluster solutions
based on industry standards. The offering helps HPC customers manage and
visualize the large volumes of data created by computational analysis.
Already a leader in HPC with 31.5 percent market share,(1) HP plans to
extend that lead with its Unified Cluster Portfolio for HPC clusters, a
segment growing 50 percent annually.(2)
"Until recently, HPC customers were constrained to a narrow range of choice
and functionality," said Winston Prather, vice president and general
manager, High-Performance Computing, HP. "If they wanted a customized
solution they would be forced to go with proprietary systems. Today, HP is
staking out a larger claim in the HPC market as the only vendor to deliver
cluster solutions coupled with packaged applications that offer simplicity,
flexibility and increased performance at lower cost."
The Unified Cluster Portfolio is the first solution in the industry to
provide a common implementation across multiple operating systems (HP-UX,
Microsoft Windows® and Linux) and servers based on industry-standard
processors (Intel® Xeon?, Itanium® and AMD Opteron?) and through
participation with partners and the open source community.
Supercomputing at the University of Kentucky
The University of Kentucky's (UK) Center for Computational Sciences is
laying the groundwork to become a national center for computational
chemistry. The performance and stability of the clusters handling the
associated processing workload is extremely critical.
The UK Center recently purchased a 128-node HP Cluster Platform 3000, with
XC System Software and a 6-terabyte HP StorageWorks Scalable File Share
cluster. Additionally, they rely on a supercomputer made up of four HP
Integrity Superdome servers with a total of 224 processors running HP-UX
11i v2 with HP Virtual Server Environment.
"Our challenge was to boost our capacity to meet increasing levels of
research and to achieve the highest performance available for our chemistry
applications," said John Connolly, director of the Center for Computational
Sciences, University of Kentucky. "HP delivered a cluster platform that
combined the flexibility of a custom-built solution with the simplicity,
reliability and value of a pre-configured, factory-built product. The
result is a supercomputer that is attracting the top students and
researchers from across the country to our campus."
Unified Cluster Portfolio components
The HP Unified Cluster Portfolio features innovations in computation,
visualization and data management. The foundation of the portfolio
consists of three new standards-based, factory pre-assembled and tested HP
cluster platforms that can extend to as many as 512 systems (more than
1,000 processors) and a comprehensive software range of commercial and open
source reference applications and tools.
Engineered and supported by HP, the XC System Software V2 for Linux is
available as a cluster management option for the HP cluster platform. XC
software is scalable, primarily open source, and can be integrated with HP
StorageWorks Scalable File Share. XC software provides single-system
management for job and resource scheduling and simplified software
installation, resulting in higher levels of productivity and scalability.
Delivering large, fast and simplified storage, the release of HP
StorageWorks Scalable File Share (HP SFS) is a Linux cluster file server
based on Lustre? technology, which incorporates HPC-oriented HP
StorageWorks SFS20 disk arrays for optimized price/performance. The
release of HP MPI (Message Passing Interface) is an industry-first
transparent universal interface (for both UNIX® and Linux) that enables
technical ISVs to write applications that will run over a variety of
Expected to be available in early 2005, HP Scalable Visualization
technology is an open, affordable high-end visualization solution based on
HP-developed Sepia technology and industry-standard components which is
integrated with XC System Software and support for HP StorageWorks SFS.
The two new HP Integrity servers in the Unified Cluster Portfolio are the
dual-processor rx1620 and rx2620 systems, with 1.6-gigahertz Intel Itanium
2 processors. HP also announced the quad-processor rx4640 with the newly
enhanced Itanium 2 processor with larger cache. All three server models are
targeted at both the technical HPC and commercial computing marketplaces.
Additionally, HP is adding Integrated Lights Out (iLO) management to its
one- to four-processor HP Integrity servers, which simplifies remote server
management and helps decrease administration costs. HP plans to integrate
the new, higher performing Itanium 2 processors into midrange HP Integrity
and HP Integrity Superdome servers early next year.
The Unified Cluster Portfolio offers customers choice in implementing
clustering solutions with HP Cluster Platform 3000 on HP ProLiant DL360 and
DL380 servers with Xeon processors with Extended Memory 64-bit Technology
(EM64T), HP Cluster Platform 4000 on HP ProLiant DL145 and DL585 servers
with AMD Opteron processors, and the HP Cluster Platform 6000 on HP
Integrity rx1620 and rx2620 servers with Itanium processors.
Broad vendor support
The HP Unified Cluster Portfolio is supported by a broad range of leading
independent software vendors that offer applications to customers in
industries such as aerospace, automotive, life and material sciences, and
oil and gas.
Accelrys, Inc. helps customers in the life and material sciences industry
accelerate the design, discovery and development of pharmaceuticals and
chemicals by providing products and services in informatics and
"HP's cluster platforms provide a solid reference configuration for our
Materials Studio applications for quantum mechanical simulation by offering
flexible solutions that meet a diverse set of customer needs," said Keith
Glassford, Ph.D., director, Materials Science, Accelrys. "The
industry-standard HP Unified Cluster Portfolio, with HP MPI, helps us
develop applications that mitigate risk as they will run across various
high-speed interconnects, making them much more attractive to our
Fluent Inc. is the world's largest provider of commercial computational
fluid dynamics software and services. Its clients are market leaders in
industries such as automotive, aerospace, chemical and materials
processing, power generation, biomedical and electronics.
"HP's new cluster platforms are perfectly on the mark for the CAE
community," said Paul Bemis, vice president, Product Marketing, Fluent Inc.
"Customers using our computational fluid dynamics software are eager to
take advantage of highly scalable clusters based on industry-standard
technology. We are delighted to see HP focused on this opportunity and
believe that HP's range of offerings within the Unified Cluster Portfolio
will be well received by our customers."
More information on the HP Unified Cluster Portfolio is available at
A news advisory on the new HP Integrity servers is available at
Pricing and availability
The estimated U.S. street price of a 16-node HP Cluster Platform is
$62,000.(3) All HP cluster platforms are available immediately. The HP
Cluster Platform 6000, with the new Integrity servers, is expected to be
available in January 2005.