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Monday, June 26th, 2006, 12:50 pm

Windows High-Perfrmance Computing – Miserable Failure

Macs cluster

I may have just helped in intercepting a key decision and plan. It was the plan of our Division to convert a Linux HPC cluster into a Windows Compute Server, deploying it across approximately 32 nodes.

Not everybody was happy with this decision which made by just one junior staff, especially after I had voiced my own opinions. That guy, a regular Windows user, was rather frustrated. He wanted to convert a perfectly-operational Linux cluster into something else. He wanted to do so because the *nix system administrator who runs the Linux supercomputer has recently left. Without much clue about the alternative route, he went ahead and made a proposition to the management, contacting Microsoft in the process.

It worries me when such decisions are pushed forward by people who are not qualified to judge. The initiator does not know anything but Windows, let alone is able to draw a comparsion between different high-performance solutions (IBM have clearly stated that Linux is superior in that arena).

The person in question was/is bound to go to a training course on using Windows supercomputing, but an afternoon IT staff meeting will review the whole plan and possibly scrape it. I feel as though I have, to some extent, prevented a huge and expensive mistake from being made. That was my Linux advocacy for today and it was done locally, where it truly matters, rather than over cyberspace.

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