Sun launches UltraSparc T2, QLogic readies 8Gb FC, Green Grid announces timelines, IBM migrates running apps, and much more

It's been a busy couple days in enterprise HPC. In today's news update Sun launches Niagara II as the UltraSparc T2 and adds a mass storage option for SMB, QLogic readies 8Gb FC, the Green Grid responds to Gartner's criticisms and announces timelines, IBM announces software to migrate running apps and a new blade for business intelligence, and much more.

Here’s a collection of highlights, selected totally subjectively, from the recent enterprise HPC news stream as reported at

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Star-P for finance revved

Interactive Supercomputing has released Star-P 2.5 for Financial Services, the newest version of its financial software designed to bring the power of HPC to financial institutions. (More on this enterprise HPC news item)

Sun adds mass storage option for smaller enterprises

The Register is reporting today on a new tape-based storage offering from Sun in the small-to-medium sized business market. (More on this enterprise computing news item)

QLogic readies 8Gb Fibre Channel

QLogic has begun vendor qualification on its new line of 8 Gb Fibre Channel switches and host bus adapters

The new cards double the performance of FC products you can get from QLogic today but remain compatible with older 4 and 2 Gb solutions.

Sun launches Niagara II

Sun announced the commercial launch of the UltraSparc T2, codenamed Niagara II. 8 cores, 64 threads, designed for virtualization. (More on this HPC news item)

Green Grid announces strategy, timelines

The Green Grid gave an overview of their strategy and timeline for deliverables at a press event yesterday.

The group reiterated its bottom up focus (partly in response to questions about criticisms from the Gartner Group): start with the data center now, where they feel they can make a near-term impact and get their hands around the problem, and work out to larger issues over the long term when there is a contribution to be made.

The strategy is focused around three thrusts: data collection, data assessment, and technology proposals. The near term plan is aggressive, with major deliverable documents in all thrusts by the end of this year. Certainly some of these documents will be high level, but the group intends to iterate and refine over time.

For more on this item, including a detailed list of deliverables and their due dates, click over to full article at

PG&E has also announced their membership in the GG, the first utility to do so.

NVIDIDA announces new GPU server

NVIDIA has announced their new GPU server from SIGGRAPH today, the Quadro Plex Visual Computing System (VCS) Model S4.

The Quadro Plex Model S4 is an industry standard form factor optimized for large-scale server deployments. Featuring four Quadro GPUs in a high-density 1U chassis for high-performance remote graphics and offline rendering applications, the Quadro Plex Model S4 offers system monitoring, thermal control and fault notification for efficient integration into data centers.

IBM’s BI blade

IBM announced its Information Server Blade from LinuxWorld this week

The new IBM Information Server Blade is a completely integrated offering comprised of IBM blade hardware, the IBM Information Server data integration software platform, and implementation services including financing….

Designed for all types of challenging data integration projects including consolidations, mergers and acquisitions, business intelligence or data warehousing, IBM Information Server Blade leverages the dynamic nature of grid computing with the flexibility of blade computing and virtualization technologies to access and translate large quantities of information stored across an enterprise.

IBM is talking about these things in small clusters for medium- to large-sized businesses

…a major corporation used a cluster of Information Server Blades at a cost around $300,000 running 24 Intel microprocessors to crunch through a massive data warehousing job in 45 minutes. Previously, when the job was run on a $3 million Sun server, the data integration job took them five and a half hours.

(More on this enterprise HPC news item)

IBM announces migration of running apps

IBM has started talking about its new Live Partition Mobility technology, now in beta.

Live Partition Mobility, currently in beta testing with general availability planned later this year, is a continuous availability feature that will enable POWER6-based servers, such as the System p 570, to move live logical partitions — including the entire operating system and all its running applications — from one server to another while the systems are running.

This sounds similar to the functionality that Evergrid is currently working on, some of which is deployed. While I believe that neither offering requires users to change their codes, the IBM solution is supported in hardware. (More on this enterprise HPC news item)

John West summarizes the HPC news headlines every day at, and writes on leadership and career issues for technology professionals at InfoWorld. You can contact him at