[rescue] Compaq Proliant 8000

Patrick Finnegan pat at computer-refuge.org
Thu Apr 29 00:54:48 CDT 2004

On Thursday 29 April 2004 00:10, Dave McGuire wrote:
> On Apr 29, 2004, at 1:06 AM, Nick wrote:
> > Question for you, does AMD Opteron count as "x86"?
>    I think the jury is still out on that one, at least for me.  I'd
> lean toward yes, though, because people seem to be building nothing
> but ordinary shit PCs with them so far.
>         -Dave

What about the Octigabay 12K... aka Cray XD1?  That's an interesting 
machine... and definately NOT a shit PC.  When I talked to the 
president of Octigabay at SC2003 (SuperComputing conference in 
Phoenix), I was quite impressed with what they'd done with them.. and 
that he was well versed in the technical aspects (aka not a PHB).  The 
machines were supposed to be about $150k list for a single chassis with 
6 processor pairs and a couple (4?) of PCI-esque slots.

I can't quote numbers, but they had AWESOME latency numbers - better 
than even Quadrics - and were still not at their goal yet.

And their "maximum machine size" was quite impressive too, IIRC, 1024 of 
the chassis for a total of 12K processors max.

Now, that's pretty damn awesome.  They're priced just a bit high, 

Another company, which was giving out tape measures at the conference 
(can't remember who at the moment), was showing off a really nicely 
designed quad Opteron system, which I think was about $20k list.  They 
payed attention to airflow, PCI busses, expandability, chassis design, 
and memory slots.  It's the only quad Opteron I've seen so far that has 
all 16 possible DIMM slots (4 per processor) actually put on the board.

Opteron is here, and in a big way I think.  It amuses me that for once 
Intel is playing catch-up to AMD, adopting a near exact copy of the 
x86-64 architecture, and calling it "64bit extentions for Xeon".  
Except, of course, Intel has left out the execute permission bit from 
their MMU, so that you still can execute the stack frame and data areas 
on their chips, an important feature for Microsoft Windows to be able 
to spread virii. :-/

Of course, there's still the "shit PC" Opertons aimed at people who want 
to play g4m3z on them and do "b0x m0dz" by putting a window and cold 
cathode flourescent lamp in the machine.  Or untrustworthy cluster 
building companies like PSSC... (short story: very dissatisfied 
customer.  Avoid them like they're a strain of the Black Plague that 
emmits 1MeV neutrons.)

Purdue University ITAP/RCS        ---  http://www.itap.purdue.edu/rcs/
The Computer Refuge               ---  http://computer-refuge.org

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