HP and Microsoft join forces for HPC

Ian Williams | Jun 29, 2007 12:06 PM
Supercomputers for all.
HP and Microsoft have extended their existing global sales and marketing agreement to focus on high-performance computing (HPC). 

The companies said at the International Supercomputing Conference in Dresden that they would drive HPC into the mass market by delivering supercomputing clusters that are easier to deploy, support and manage for enterprise and mid-market customers. 

"HPC is poised for continued strong growth, averaging over 20 percent a year for the past four years, with HPC standards-based clusters growing at even higher rates," said Earl Joseph, programme vice president at analyst firm IDC. 

"End-users are looking for easy-to-use systems and are likely to go with vendors that can provide an easy transition from their desktops to HPC servers. "

Joseph added that the combination of Windows Compute Cluster Server (CCS) on HP's ProLiant and Blade servers has the potential to "enable more customers to take advantage of HPC technologies".

This is especially true for desktop users, according to the analyst, who are already familiar with the Windows environment.

HP's enhancements to Windows CCS include customised installation scripts and documentation to help streamline deployment.

The optional HP Message Passing Interface and InifiBand drivers will offer increased scalability and performance in applications that require high-speed, low-latency communications.

As part of the alliance, HP and Microsoft have established technology centres in Houston and Grenoble in France for customers and independent software vendors.

The technology centres provide a venue for benchmarking, testing and validating applications on HP servers based on AMD and Intel processors running Windows CCS.