Posts Tagged ‘ performance ’

Josh Simons

High Performance Computing (HPC) Update

October 31, 2014
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High Performance Computing (HPC) Update

Our HPC effort at VMware has been very active in recent months, and we have lots of information to share– including new performance results. Rather than cramming all of that content into a single mega blog entry, I’ve decided instead to give a preview here of some of the most significant developments. I will then delve into each of these areas in more detail in a series of upcoming monthly blog posts. InfiniBand Performance This spring we installed a four-node InfiniBand HPC cluster in our lab in Cambridge, MA. The system includes four HP DL380p Gen8 servers, each with 128 GB memory and two Intel 3.0GHz E5-2667 eight-core processors and Mellanox ConnectX3 cards that support both FDR (56 Gb/s) InfiniBand and 40 Gb/s RoCE....

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Virtualized High Performance Computing in 2014

December 12, 2013
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Virtualized High Performance Computing in 2014

As we complete another circuit around the sun, it’s time again to make some predictions about what we’ll see over the course of our next orbit. Since my work in the Office of the CTO focuses on High Performance (Technical) Computing, I’ll focus there. But before looking ahead, let’s take a minute to look back and see how I did with my predictions last year . 2013 Predictions Scorecard Last year, my predictions related to public cloud, private cloud, RDMA in the cloud, virtual machine evolution, and HPC acquisitions. My biggest “miss” was also my most specific prediction — that Amazon would announce RDMA support in 2013 in order to better support latency-sensitive MPI applications. They did not,...

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Josh Simons

Virtualized High Performance Computing (HPC) at VMworld 2013

August 19, 2013
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It’s been a busy few months on the HPC front here at VMware. I’ve been spending increasing amounts of time answering questions from our field people and talking with customers about the benefits of using virtualization and cloud technologies for HPC workloads. The two hottest application areas are clearly Life Sciences and Electronic Design Automation (EDA), with Financial Services as a third area where serious interest is starting to ramp. Customers in these sectors are actively evaluating or deploying HPC solutions based on VMware technology. Some of this work will be presented at VMworld 2013 August 25-29 in San Francisco. Here are the talks that will be of special interest to organizations whose job mixes include the technical, scientific or engineering...

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Josh Simons

Hadoop Performance on vSphere 5.1

April 19, 2013
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Hadoop Performance on vSphere 5.1

We’ve just published a third Hadoop performance paper, written by VMware performance expert Jeff Buell, which looks in detail at the relative performance of a bare-metal 32-node Hadoop cluster compared to a range of virtual clusters with up to 128 VMs. The executive summary is that while we saw a 13% performance degradation in a head-to-head comparison of a 32-node physical cluster against a 32-VM virtual cluster (one VM per host) running on the same hardware and running the same tests, virtualized performance can be increased significantly — to the point where virtualized Hadoop actually runs a bit faster than physical — by increasing the number of VMs per host. We’ve seen this effect before with Hadoop...

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Josh Simons

Paravirtual RDMA for Low Latency and Flexibility

December 27, 2012
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The Office of the CTO has been exploring how to best enable application access to RDMA for those applications requiring the ultimate in high bandwidth, low-latency communication, which includes many HPC MPI applications as well as many scale-out databases and BigData approaches. Passthrough mode is the most straightforward way to enable guest-level RDMA. With passthrough (which we call VM DirectPath I/O), a physical PCI device can be made directly visible to the guest operating system running within the virtual machine. We published a research note showing that this approach delivers very good InfiniBand latencies (under 2us) and excellent bandwidths over a wide range of message sizes. There is a downside, however: Punching through the virtual machine abstraction in this way disables several...

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Josh Simons

2013 Predictions: When Worlds Collide

December 18, 2012
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2013 Predictions: When Worlds Collide

It’s time again to dust off the crystal ball, cast the yarrow sticks, read the tea leaves, and share some thoughts about where the IT world is heading over the next twelve months and beyond. Because my focus at VMware is on High Performance Computing (HPC), I’ll confine my prognostications primarily to the growing area of overlap between mainstream Enterprise Computing and HPC — places where each world can benefit from the other in important ways. Before I start, let’s get one no-brainer prediction out of the way: 2012 will be remembered for Nicira , and not Nibiru .¬†Yes, software-defined networking ( SDN ) will trump planetary collisions and the...

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