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SCC11: Meet the Purdue Boilermakers

Have sledgehammer, will cluster

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Team vid Purdue is one of two teams that’s participated in the SC11 Student Cluster Competition (SCC) since its inception. They’re a solid team with a half-n-half mixture of rookies and SCC veterans. This year they’re bringing the typical workmanlike Purdue attitude to the competition – along with a plethora of traditional HPC gear.

The Boilermaker cluster relies on the latest 10-core Intel Xeon CPUs provided by sponsor Intel. They’re running four quad-socket nodes, which gives them a total of 160 cores to devote to the various challenge applications. At 64GB per node their cluster is mid-range memory-wise, which may put them at a disadvantage vs. a few of their competitors.

In the off season, the Purdue team worked on gaining greater understanding of the scientific disciplines associated with the specific workloads in this year’s competition. This approach could pay off; they may have learned tuning secrets that can be gained only through experience – or through picking the brains of those experienced practitioners.

Another constant with Team Purdue is their signature sledgehammer. I was concerned when I didn’t see it prominently displayed in their booth as they set up their gear. But it was there today while they were running LINPACK, putting my mind at ease. Check out the video to get an up close and personal look at this crop of Boilermakers. ®

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