Sunday, September 11, 2005

Kyril Faenov at PDC (& West Coast Grid)

Kyril Faenov, the product manager for Compute Cluster Edition, is giving a session at PDC. The description is:

This session provides an overview of the Windows Server Compute Cluster Solution and guidance on designing applications that can exploit parallel processing capability to address high-performance scenarios. We cover parallel programming techniques, job scheduler integration, message passing interfaces and related concepts. See how you can exploit cluster processing to deliver the performance your customers need.

I wish I could go; I'll be stuck in our booth. My colleague Robert will be there for sure.

I'm really excited for CCE to come out; it's a critical move for Microsoft in the cluster market--and I think the Digipede Network is, too.

Windows CCE will address some of the big technical and license issues that have made Linux dominant over Microsoft in the cluster space. With it, Microsoft will start to make significant inroads in that market.

The Digipede Network will complement it well; we have talked for a couple of years about the "extended cluster" or "extending the cluster to the enterprise." For people who would like to, say, use a 64-node cluster and combine that with the power of several hundred desktops, the Digipede Network will give a way to take advantage of all of that power.

That's one of the big advantages to West Coast Grid computing--you don't need to have a different operating system on your cluster than the rest of your machines. And you certainly don't need to find a certain flavor of a certain operating system, either. That happens a lot with linux clusters: "This software works with this flavor of the OS, but if you want to use it with that other flavor, you're going to have to recompile and re-link with different libraries."

That seems like the "bad old days" of computing--dedicated, purpose-built hardware for a particular application. It's not flexible, and it's not extensible.