Friday, 20 November 2009

ScaleMP’s Talking BIG Clouds

ScaleMP, which builds SMP machines for HPC by aggregating multiple x86 blades into a single virtual x86 system, has become one of the cloud people.

It's adding some widgetry called vSMP Foundation for Cloud, currently in beta, to its vSMP Foundation line. It enables the dynamic, on-the-fly aggregation of x86 servers into big SMP virtual systems - sort of like what 3Leaf is doing - but ScaleMP uses virtualization for the server aggregation and the software is cloud-specific, meant for provisioning and re-provisioning large virtual-machine resources - large memory capacity and high memory bandwidth, say - mostly in private clouds.

It can currently aggregate 16 Nehalem-based x86 servers and create a virtual SMP machine with up to 128 cores and 4TB of main memory. Not your run-of-the-mill cloud ware. It doesn't need a cluster file system and can be used to create virtual machines on a per job, per project or per customer basis. The company says it eliminates the need to deploy dedicated shared memory systems.

It integrates with systems management and provisioning tools and supports any programming model (serial, throughput, multi-threaded or large-memory) without machine boundary.

ScaleMP founder and president Shai Fultheim says, "vSMP Foundation enables organizations to run large workloads in their cloud that previously required dedicated hardware infrastructure. This will result in increased cloud utilization, offering incredible return on investment."

The company has also enhanced its underlying vSMP Foundation for SMP product with what's called Direct Connect 2 (DC2) technology, which targets entry-level customers by aggregating up to four Intel systems using point-to-point InfiniBand connectivity.

Without needing an InfiniBand switch, the cost of virtual SMP implementations can fall by as much as 20%.

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