[rescue] Cray J90s

Zach Malone rescue at sunhelp.org
Mon Jun 11 04:10:46 CDT 2001

Greetings again,
    Glad to hear the Crays have a bunch of things going for them, I knew the
bandwidth would shred a PC based system, but I have never heard of vector
based computing before.  Could you elaborate?  Thanks a ton.  Is there a
license agreement prohibiting users from publishing the boot guide?  Or is
it just so scarce that its neigh impossible to find?
----- Original Message -----
From: "Dave McGuire" <mcguire at neurotica.com>
To: <rescue at sunhelp.org>
Sent: Tuesday, June 12, 2001 6:27 PM
Subject: Re: [rescue] Cray J90s

> On June 12, Jonathan Katz wrote:
> > On Tue, Jun 12, 2001 at 05:49:24PM -0400, Dave McGuire wrote:
> > > > http://cgi.ebay.com/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=1245498968
> > > > http://cgi.ebay.com/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=1244448223
> > >   Actually, they're both real steals in the grand scheme of things.
> > > The supercomputer secondary market is a very, very strange thing.  If
> > > anyone here is really interested, I'd be happy to explain why these
> > > two (and the third) systems aren't selling worth a damn on eBay, in
> > > spite of being relisted over and over at lower and lower prices.
> >
> > How low will it go? I heard stuff about things overseas and they
> > can't ship them overseas and stuff... please edumacate us!
>   These very systems had high bids in the $15K range a couple of
> months ago.  A fellow in Germany was bidding on them.  As far as I was
> able to tell, he had the money and was able to complete the
> transactions...but the sellers here couldn't export the hardware.  So
> they were relisted.
>   Trouble is...Unless you dig around and find out exactly what
> happened, what would one think when one sees a machine sell, then get
> relisted a week or two later?  I'd think "oh shit, their deal fell
> through, something must've gone wrong...there's probably something
> wrong with the machine" or something like that.  Most people aren't
> familiar enough with this sort of hardware to be able to take a chance
> on it not being 100% functional out-of-the-box.  Even booting a J90
> takes several steps...it's not that complex, but it's still a rpcedure
> that one must learn, and there are NO doc sets available on the
> street.
>   Further, for people who ARE familiar with the hardware, we poke
> around a bit and notice that the machines (all three of them) are
> incomplete in one way or another.  Every J90 comes with a Sun Sparc5
> loaded with Solaris and a bunch of Cray software that controls the
> powerup diags and booting of the J90.  The machine cannot run without
> this [unmodified Sun] Sparc5 and its [impossible to get] software.
>   Basically, you need to befriend someone who has a running machine
> and a willingness to help you, or you have no hope of ever getting it
> running.
> > Especially because there is the possibility of some kind of CFD
> > homework that I may do, except I can't code for crap and don't
> > remember much calculus.
>   If you figure out the calculus and ship me a sixpack of Red Bull, I
> could probably be talked into giving you an account on one of my
> Crays.  I can help you out with writing vectorizable code also.  It's
> actually lots of fun.
>       -Dave McGuire
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