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New HPC Products And Technologies From Sun Increase Scale, Simplicity And Savings For Customers


Sun Extends HPC Performance Leadership with Seven New World Records; Sun Constellation System Powers Supercomputers Around the World.

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Sun Microsystems, Inc. (NASDAQ: JAVA) -- in conjunction with its Open Network Systems launch -- today announced new servers, integrated open storage and high-performance networking that bring scale, simplicity and savings to the HPC market, making Sun’s high performance technology capabilities available to a broader customer segment than ever before. Sun’s scalable new HPC systems, including the next-generation Sun Constellation System, are expected to power some of the world’s leading HPC facilities, and can address a broad range of HPC applications requiring high performance, high throughput, large memory and fast I/O. For more information on the Sun Constellation System and HPC solutions for clusters, storage and archive, please visit:

Sun is taking integration to a new level and providing leadership scalability, flexibility and compute density in a no-compromise HPC design, by combining the new dual-node Sun Blade X6275 server module powered by the ground-breaking Intel Xeon processor 5500 series, with the new Sun Blade 6048 InfiniBand (IB) Quad Data Rate (QDR) Network Express Module (NEM), the Sun Blade 6048 chassis, the Sun Cooling Door system, the Lustre file system and Sun’s Open Storage portfolio. This scalable, efficient Sun Constellation System leverages advanced Sun technologies including next-generation Flash-based system performance design, IB QDR networking, an integrated Linux-based HPC software stack, and advanced cooling technologies to provide the highest level of integration and performance across computing, storage, networking and software. In addition, Sun Blade server nodes can be separately provisioned to run Linux, Windows, Solaris or OpenSolaris operating systems, while also giving users the flexibility to migrate nodes from one operating system to another as needed.

“Slow pipes and slow storage have limited high performance computing systems for years. The solution is to evolve the industry’s view of high performance computing today to include high performance I/O and networking,” said John Fowler, executive vice president, Systems Group, Sun Microsystems. “Our Open Network Systems approach first solved this problem with the Sun Constellation System. Today, Sun is taking integrated compute, software, networking and storage to the next level and our innovations are giving HPC customers the speed, scalability and simplicity to help solve the world’s greatest challenges.”

Sun Ups Performance Ante with New x64 Servers Powered by Intel Xeon Processor 5500 Series

Sun announced today a line of Flash-ready x64 blade servers, rack servers and workstations powered by the Intel Xeon processor 5500 series. The dual-node Sun Blade X6275 server module is the first blade server to support onboard IB QDR for extreme network performance, power efficiency and ease of use. Each Sun Blade X6275 server module has two full-function compute nodes, each with two Intel Xeon processor 5500 series, up to 96GB of high-speed memory, integrated QDR IB Host Channel Adapter (HCA) and Gigabit Ethernet, optional Sun Flash Modules, and optional PCIe ExpressModule I/O. The configurability of the system ensures that the same blades can run compute-intensive, memory-intensive, communication-intensive or I/O-intensive applications, so customers can address nearly all of their HPC workloads with a single cluster system from Sun.

With the Sun Blade 6048 chassis, the Sun Blade X6275 server module also provides extreme density with 48 physical blades per rack -- supporting 96 nodes of two-socket, quad-core processors per node, resulting in a total of 768 processor cores and nine teraFLOPS of peak performance in a single 42U rack. This represents up to 71 percent more cores/rack than IBM (as compared to the IBM BladeCenter H) and 50 percent more cores/rack than HP. With 2.25 teraFLOPS of peak compute capacity and Linpack efficiency of 89 percent per every shelf of 12 blades, customers can expect up to two teraFLOPS of actual computational power. Moreover, for communication-intensive applications that rely on high-speed IB interconnect to perform tasks -- such as weather modeling and forecasting, high energy and nuclear physics, molecular dynamics calculations and seismic processing -- customers can expect up to 92 percent efficiency from a single shelf of the Sun Blade 6048 chassis.

For more information on the Sun Blade X6275 server module, please visit:

Sun Cooling Door System Minimizes Energy Consumption, Costs

The new Sun Cooling Door systems, which were demonstrated at Supercomputing 2008 as “Project Glacier,” offer six times more efficient rack cooling than standard datacenter cooling systems to significantly reduce energy consumption and increase effective compute density by up to 70 percent over in-row cooling options. Designed with an unprecedented capacity of up to 35kW per rack, the Sun Cooling Door system fits in the rear of the updated Sun Blade 6048 modular system. It has the highest cooling efficiency and capacity in a 100 percent passive design that does not require additional fans or electrical power to function. Available as either the Sun Cooling Door 5200, which leverages existing chilled-water infrastructure, or the Sun Cooling Door 5600, which utilizes eco-friendly refrigerant gas, these advanced cooling systems remove heat at the source, require minimal datacenter footprint and can help avoid costly datacenter makeovers. For more information on Sun Cooling Door systems, please visit:

New Family of Integrated Networking Solutions Efficiently Maximize Performance and Scalability

The HPC networking solutions announced today help to maximize performance with an integrated signaling and switching approach that uses the latest available technology to optimize per-node performance and system-wide scaling for application communications and I/O. Using these solutions, customers can dramatically simplify their environment from less highly integrated solutions -- reducing cabling by 84 percent, switches by 97 percent, and rack space by 75 percent.

New networking products include:

* Sun Blade 6048 Quad Data Rate InfiniBand Switched Network Express Module (NEM): Offers integrated switching functionality for QDR IB networks directly within the Sun Blade 6048 chassis. Each node on a Sun Blade X6275 server module offers onboard QDR IB HCAs that interface directly with the integrated Sun Blade 6048 IB QDR Switched NEMs in the Sun Blade 6048 chassis, and the Sun Blade 6048 IB QDR Switched NEMs directly connect to Sun Datacenter IB switches in high-bandwidth fat-tree topologies or to other Sun Blade 6048 IB QDR Switched NEMs in low-cost 3D torus configurations.
* Sun InfiniBand Dual Port 4x QDR PCIe ExpressModule Host Channel Adaptor (HCA): Delivering additional QDR IB connectivity to Sun’s Blade Server Modules, the QDR IB PCIe ExpressModule HCA enables “multi-rail” cluster deployments, provisioning each server node with multiple independent IB fabric connections supporting the most network intensive cluster workloads.
* Sun Blade 6000 Virtualized Multi Fabric 10GbE NEM: Offers 20:1 reduced cabling that greatly simplifies Sun Blade 6000 deployment, removes interoperability issues and decreases management costs.
* Project M9: Sun is also previewing “Project M9,” a future addition to its Sun Datacenter Switch family. “Project M9” will double the IB capability of Sun HPC solutions with unparalleled scalability and dramatically simplify cable management.

For more information on Sun’s HPC networking solutions, please visit:

Sun Lustre Storage System Delivers Complete Solution Based on Lustre and Open Storage

To deliver the I/O performance demanded by high performance computing applications, Sun is announcing the availability of the Sun Lustre Storage System - a complete Lustre and Open Storage hardware solution, supported by a suite of Sun services. The Sun Lustre Storage System will enable customers to scale online capacity from 48 terabytes to multiple petabytes, and scale I/O performance from 1 GB per second to more than 100 GB per second. The Sun Lustre Storage System dramatically simplifies the deployment of Lustre-based solutions with pre-defined metadata server and object storage server configurations that offer high-performance, high-availability and cost efficiency. In addition, standard configuration and delivery makes the solution fast to deploy and easy to manage, and available support options help optimize uptime and performance. For more information on the Sun Lustre Storage System, please visit:

Next-Generation Sun Constellation System to Power Some of the World’s Largest HPC Systems

Sun’s new Sun Constellation System is expected to power some of the largest HPC systems in the world, with more than two PetaFLOPS of performance already installed or ordered. Customers such as Australian National University (ANU), Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology, South Africa’s Centre for High Performance Computing (CHPC), the Galileu Project and the University of Zurich have chosen Sun’s HPC solutions, including the Sun Constellation System, Lustre file system, Sun Open Storage and Sun HPC Software, for their unprecedented performance, scale and efficiency. For more information on the Sun Constellation System, please visit:

The Australian Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) and The Australian National University (ANU) have chosen to implement two interoperable Sun Constellation Systems, which include the Sun Blade X6275. “By installing over 2500 of these blades in total between the two sites, our scientists are better able to integrate research conducted at the ANU facility with our operational systems. The Bureau’s Constellation System will assist us in improving our weather prediction capabilities through enabling much higher resolution models than we can execute today,” said Phil Tannenbaum, Chief Information Officer at the Bureau of Meteorology.

New Open Network Systems From Sun Demonstrate Unprecedented HPC Performance

Sun’s newest Open Network systems -- including the Sun Blade X6275 and X6270 server modules, Sun Fire X4170 server, Sun Fire X2270 server and Sun Ultra 27 workstation -- combined with open-source software, such as OpenSolaris or Linux operating systems and the freely available Sun Studio 12 Update 1 compiler, are well-tailored for demanding HPC environments while delivering top-notch performance results across several key industry benchmarks:

* SPECint2006 benchmark: The Sun Fire X4170 server produced a world-record score on this compute-intensive computational suite of tests that stresses a computer’s processor and memory architecture(1).
* SPECompL2001 benchmark: Sun’s newest 1RU server -- the Sun Fire X2270 -- is perfect for dense HPC installations and comes with necessary credentials, like an x86 world record on a large problem set of the benchmark that includes high-energy physics, weather modeling and computational chemistry workloads(2)
* SPECfp2006 benchmark: The fastest single socket system in the world for floating point operations, the Sun Ultra 27 workstation extends the reach of Sun’s portfolio of Open Network systems to the desktop. In addition, using Sun Studio 12 Update 1, the Sun Blade X6270 server module sets a new SPECfp2006 world record with a 20 percent lead over the previous best score(3)
* SPECompM2001 benchmark: On a very popular medium problem set of this HPC benchmark, the Sun Blade X6275 server module delivers a new x86 world record showing off the multi-threaded scalability of the system, stability of the OpenSolaris 2008.11 OS and Sun Studio 12 Update 1 compiler’s support for OpenMP(4)
* SPECint_rate2006 and SPECfp_rate2006 benchmarks: Designed for ultimate throughput and density, the Sun Blade X6275 server module combines the compute capacity of four Intel Xeon processor 5500 series with the OpenSolaris OS to deliver better performance than any other blade, setting records for both integer and floating point throughput. The SPEC CPU2006 benchmark provides a broad variety of workloads such as protein sequencing, MPEG-4 decoding, XML processing, structural mechanics and speech recognition(5)

To see all HPC benchmark results on Open Network Systems, please visit:

1) Sun Fire X4170 (2 chips / 8 cores / 16 threads, OpenSolaris 2008.11, Studio 12 update 1) - 36.8 SPECint2006
2) Sun Fire X2270 (2 chips / 8 cores / 16 OMP threads, OpenSolaris 2008.11, Studio 12 update 1) - 254,318 SPECompL2001
3) Sun Ultra 27 (1 chip / 4 cores / 8 threads, OpenSolaris 2008.11, Studio 12 update 1) - 45.4 SPECfp2006. Sun Blade X6270 (2 chips / 8 cores / 16 threads, OpenSolaris 2008.11, Studio 12 update 1) - 50.4 SPECfp2006
4) Sun Blade X6275 (2 chips / 8 cores / 16 OMP threads, OpenSolaris 2008.11, Studio 12 update 1) - 48,097 SPECompM2001
5) Sun Blade X6275 (2 nodes with 2 chips / 8 cores / 16 threads each, OpenSolaris 2008.11, Studio 12 update 1) - 478 SPECint_rate2006, 355 SPECfp_rate2006


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