Friday, March 27, 2009

A wider context to the project Hybrid

It is my pleasure to inform you that the hybrid GPU-CPU cluster is finally assembled and the first "burn-out" tests of the equipment are underway!

Since the scheduling script is still to be designed, for now the cluster will be opened for logins on individual nodes that can access two GPUs, so that project collaborators can start playing around with the coding and code performance.

We were slowed down considerably due to various problems in purchasing the equipment and assembling the room for the cluster (power supply, acoustic isolation). The good news is that we have a dedicated room for our equipment and a dedicated classroom that will follow in the second part of the project by the end of the summer. I have to mention that the cluster would not be assembled without the hard work of our two project assistants: Jurica Teklić and Dubravko Balić.

Another very good news is that, after a long wait, the Ministry of Science and Education approved the novice position (PhD position) for one graduate student working on the Hybrid.

As an effort to expand this project and get some money for additional personnel and travel support, we applied for a new research grant and now we are waiting for the results of the first round of evaluations. The important news regarding this application is that we have two companies involved as project partners and technical support to our project. One is VEUS d.o.o. from Zagreb and the other is Mirriad Limited from UK. The project partner is also the Department of Astronomy at the University of Washington as the host of our collaboration with the LSST project ( This collaboration with LSST is especially interesting due to the scale and importance of the LSST project.

In general, the project proposal has four main Themes that will receive a special attention if we get the funds:
1. Large scale data mining (handling large data sets such as the LSST database)
2. Computational microscope (simulation of macromolecules and materials on atomic scale in general)
3. Particle dynamics (N-body problems and dynamics of individual "particles" in various environments)
4. Weather Forecasting for Split region (improving weather forecasting models for Split region, which has a specific microclimate)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

First Node and Tesla Unit Active

Yesterday, March 10th 2008, we successfully booted and provisionally set up the first two CPU nodes (2 quad core CPUs each) paired with one quad-GPU Tesla S1070 unit. Present at the happy event was the entire team (Dubravko, Jurica, Dejan & Mario -- see the photos), but the credit for setting everything up goes entirely to Jurica & Dubravko.

Three other Tesla units are already at the site, while the remaining six nodes are expected to arrive later this week. If everything goes according to plan, we should have the hardware portion of the cluster assembled next week.

HYBRID's rack with the UPS, front-end node, two slave nodes, and a Tesla S1070.

Zoom-in on Tesla S1070.

Very bottom to top: UPS, front-end node, two slave nodes in a single 1U case, and a Tesla S1070 (the top 1U case).

First diagnostics.

Prof. Vinkovic (PI) with his graduate student Jurica Teklic.

Co-I Mario Juric, visiting from the Institute for Advanced Study.

The local team (CW from center: Dejan Vinkovic, Jurica Teklic, Kresimir Cosic and Dubravko Balic).

The Blog of GPU/CPU Hybrid Computer Cluster Project

Dear readers,

Welcome to the blog of the Hybrid Computer Cluster (HYBRID)project, lead by prof. Dejan Vinkovic at the University of Split. HYBRID is an experimental cluster that explores the use of Graphical Processing Units (GPUs) for low-cost general-purpose computing. It combines 16 quad core CPUs in 8 dual-processor nodes, with 16 NVIDIA TESLA 10 series GPUs in 4 Tesla S1070 units, into a cluster capable of 16 TFLOP of single (~2TFLOP double) precision computing power.

We will use this blog to communicate the status and new developments of the project both to our research groups, as well as the public at large.