ServerWatch: As the role of high performance computing (HPC) shifts, high performance no longer necessarily equates with high end. But is it as simple as A-B-C?
Once confined to academic research, HPC is now broadening its user base and entering the fringes of the mainstream. High-end and high-cost machines are giving way to Intel/AMD commodity boxes. The success of Linux in this zone has even forced Microsoft to enter the fray.
"The HPC market is moving at a fast pace similar to the growth of the Internet in the mid-'90s and the vendor count is rapidly increasing," says Ken Farmer of LinuxHPC.org and WinHPC.org, two technical portals covering Linux and Windows HPC and clustering. "From software development kits by Absoft, to cluster management suites by Cluster Resources, to hardware vendors like PSSC Labs, to Microsoft's Compute Cluster Server, the HPC market is going through a rapid maturation phase."