Defense Department buys Linux cluster

Linux Networx Inc. has received an order from the Defense Department for a 2,132-processor, Linux-based cluster as part of an ongoing program to modernize the department's high-performance computing capabilities. Terms of the deal were not available.

Bluffdale, Utah-based Linux Networx will perform the systems integration and ongoing support, the company said.

The massive Evolocity II cluster will be deployed at the Army Research Laboratory Major Shared Resource Center at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., as part of the Defense Department's High Performance Computing Modernization Program. When the system is fully deployed in mid-2004, it will be the program's largest Intel processor-based Linux cluster.

"The DoD's adoption of cluster technology?continues to validate our technology's reliability and high-performance computing capabilities,"" said Dean Hutchings, chief operating officer of Linux Networx.

The Evolocity II cluster will include 1,066 nodes with dual Intel Xeon 3.6-gigahertz processors running Intel's new 64-bit extension technology. Linux Networx's Clusterworx 3.0 and Ice Box management tools will be accessible from a single interface. The cluster will also use Myrinet high-speed interconnects and gigabit Ethernet technology from Foundry Networks Inc., San Jose, Calif.

Last year, Linux Networx delivered a 256-processor cluster to the Army Research Lab. Company officials said the success of that cluster helped secure the latest deal. Developers from Linux Networx and Santa Clara, Calif.-based Intel Corp. are working closely with the lab's users to port and tune applications so they will run on the new system.

"Linux Networx has proven cluster technology is reliable, robust and mature enough to be selected in even in the most demanding environment," said Thomas Kendall, lead systems engineer at the ARL MSRC.

Linux Networx will also deliver five other cluster systems to other computing centers. Details about the additional other cluster systems will be released later this year.

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