Feeds

X-ISS builds turnkey HPC for the masses

Bricks in the wall

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

X-ISS is an interesting company. Based out of Houston, it's been around for almost 20 years, offering a full slate of HPC systems and services.

The company has enhanced its turnkey HPC service with VizHPC, a visualization offering. This combo deal of hardware and services will cover the wall(s) of your choice with monitors showing highly detailed representations of data coming off your clusters in real time. X-ISSS has flavors to suit a variety of tastes, including Linux, Windows HPC Server 2008, and standard Windows.

Most HPC vendors focus on providing highly optimized, cutting-edge systems and HPC solutions; they’ll configure the right boxes and get them running well enough to hit the required performance metrics.

X-ISS does that stuff and more, but its approach to the market is quite different; it looks at each customer engagement with a more business-oriented approach than most specialist HPC vendors.

By this, I mean that the company is looking to provide value outside the hardware or specific solution by initially focusing on the overall “business goals” of the customer.

Does the customer need to increase throughput in order to attain higher revenue? Or are they looking to increase utilization, improve efficiency, or reduce costs? This a more comprehensive approach than simply configuring as much fast gear as the budget will allow and putting it into a proposal.   X-ISS also pays a lot of attention to HPC operations. Its best fit is for organizations that don’t have (or don’t want) a large staff of IT specialists to handle the care and feeding of their HPC systems.

As X-ISS evolved over the years, the company perceived the need for HPC-specific management tools to handle day-to-day admin tasks and also to track activity in order to help handle (and plan for) future growth.   To address these needs, the company has developed DecisionHPC, a software package that monitors and tracks system, application, project, and user activity. This gives customers the ability to clearly spot trends and better plan for future growth.

The company is also offering ManagedHPC as a way for customers to outsource HPC system management to X-ISS personnel. For customers, it can eliminate the need for specialized HPC systems administrators – who can be hard to find in many locations. It’s not for everyone; it’s really aimed at customers with fewer than 250 cluster nodes who either need complete management or are looking to add to the skills and coverage of their existing IT staff.

X-ISS has carved out a comfortable market niche with its monitoring products and management services. I see this as a growing segment of the market due to business-side management demanding advanced analytic capabilities that will require HPC-like computational infrastructures. Many corporate IT departments don’t have the skills or bandwidth to architect, implement, or manage these solutions – which is an opportunity for X-ISS.

Like every opportunity, it’s both good news and bad news: the bad news is that heightened demand will attract competitors just as a 50 per cent off buffet coupon attracts hungry, fat people. But there are worse problems than being an early pioneer in a growing market. You could be the dessert chef at a buffet restaurant that just put out a 50 per cent off coupon…

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft: Azure isn't ready for biz-critical apps … yet
Microsoft will move its own IT to the cloud to avoid $200m server bill
Oracle reveals 32-core, 10 BEEELLION-transistor SPARC M7
New chip scales to 1024 cores, 8192 threads 64 TB RAM, at speeds over 3.6GHz
Docker kicks KVM's butt in IBM tests
Big Blue finds containers are speedy, but may not have much room to improve
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
Gartner's Special Report: Should you believe the hype?
Enough hot air to carry a balloon to the Moon
Flash could be CHEAPER than SAS DISK? Come off it, NetApp
Stats analysis reckons we'll hit that point in just three years
Dell The Man shrieks: 'We've got a Bitcoin order, we've got a Bitcoin order'
$50k of PowerEdge servers? That'll be 85 coins in digi-dosh
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.