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Less than a year after launching its high performance computing strategy, Microsoft finds its [URL= http://www.microsoft.com/hpc/] HPC Server 2008[/URL] near the top of the heap. The Windows Server 2008 derivative placed 23rd on a list of the 500 top-performing supercomputers in the world, as measured by the [URL= http://www.ncsa.uiuc.edu/] National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA)[/URL]. And it’s which is still in beta; general availability is set for the end of this month. Running on a Dell PowerEdge Cluster equipped with 9,474 processor cores and 9600 GB of memory, HPC Server 2008 performed 68.5 trillion floating point operations (teraflops) per second, …

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High performance computing has long been a part of Intel’s dossier. But a deal announced on Monday with supercomputer maker Cray Inc. could paint Xeon in neon on Intel’s resume. The multi-year pact puts Intel’s dual-core Xeon processors—found in most of the world’s most powerful HPCs—in Cray’s next-generation system, called Cascade. Scheduled for availability sometime after 2010, Cascade was originally set to use Opteron chips, and still might. Intel also will help Cray develop technologies based on Intel’s QuickPath Interconnect, the high-speed, low-latency bus that replaces the front-side memory bus with two 25.6 Gbps channels per processor for accessing memory …

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