Tuesday, September 14, 2004

COLSA Xserve G5 supercluster completed

Several new supercomputers have been announced this year built using Apple G5 Xserve, and one of the largest, built by COLSA Corporation, has recently been completed.

Called MACH5, it incorporates 1566 dual processor G5 Xserves for a total of 3132 processors, over 40% larger than VT's supercluster which reached third place in the world last year.

COLSA states it assessed several different architectures, but ultimately chose the Apple Xserve G5 system not only because of its low cost and high performance, but also because of its comparatively low power requirements.

It will be interesting to see where COLSA's MACH5 places in the next Top 500 list of supercomputers (assuming COLSA submits Linpack performance benchmarks to the list). VT's System X is virtually assured a place in the top ten, but MACH5 uses a slower type of interconnect than System X does and thus will likely have lower Linpack performance, despite its higher number of processors.