Commodity clusters: performance comparison between PCs and workstations

R. Carter, J. Laroco, R. Armstrong
1996 Proceedings of 5th IEEE International Symposium on High Performance Distributed Computing HPDC-96  
1 Introduction Traditionally, the bulk of large scale scientific and engineering computations were performed on large specialized Supercomputers. In the last seven years, RISC based workstation technology has largely supplanted the Supercomputing market. Using techniques such as workstation clustering, wide classes of problems have been successfully attacked. Workstation clusters are networked RISC UNIX systems commonly provided by vendors such as IBM, Hewlett Packard, SUN, Silicon Graphics,
more » ... Digital Equipment Corporation. Each of these vendors is the predominant or proprietary supplier of both hardware and UNIX operating systems. Applications run on proprietary workstation clusters use UNIX features that enable hi& performance floating point, fast disk drive transfer rates, and robust networking performance in a multi-user, multi-system environment. uNu( workstation clusters are capable of achieving supercomputer efficiencies on many computationally intensive tasks. Additionally, individual cluster systew can be used as desktop UNLX workstations. The size of the PC market is about nine times larger than the proprietary UNIX workstation market. Intel Pentium based systems are the performance leader in this market. Until recently, proprietary workstation hardware and software greatly exceeded
doi:10.1109/hpdc.1996.546199 dblp:conf/hpdc/CarterLA96 fatcat:2zejxhg4sjdedajszu4obw3eyq