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Xserves among top supercomputers

updated 11:40 am EDT, Mon July 3, 2006

Apple-based supercomputers

Five of the world's top 500 supercomputers are based on Apple's Xserve technology, according to a new report. The twenty-seventh listing of the semi-annual Top 500 of the world's fastest supercomputers shows that Apple's aging Xserve line is still strong, but slipping a bit. The list was released just ahead of speculation that Apple is prepping an update to its Xserve line that would bring Intel's new Xeon "Woodcrest" processors to the line of professional servers. Macworld UK reports that each of the five Xserve-based systems have fallen slightly in the rankings with ground-breaking Apple clusters such as Colsa's Mach 5, down 6 spots from 15th position in last November's list to No. 21. In addition, Virginia Tech's System X, now in 28th place, is down from No. 20 six months ago and No. 14 last June, according to the report.

The University of Illinois' Turing system is now listed as the 114th fastest supercomputer, down from its No. 85 ranking, while the University of California's Dawson features is now No. 462 (down from No. 303) and Bowie State University's Xseed is ranked No. 468 (was No. 304). The report notes that Intel processors are used in the largest number of systems in the listing (301), while IBM's PowerPC-based Power processors--similar but not the same as the PowerPC chips found Apple's Xserve--are used in 84 systems. AMD's Opteron processors are No. 3 with 81 systems using the Intel-alternative CPU.

Macworld UK notes that the top position was once again claimed by the BlueGene/L System, a joint development of IBM and DOE's National Nuclear Security Administration. The supercomputer has held the number one position for the last 18 months on three different Top 500 lists.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. wings_rfs

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +1

    GFlops per Processor

    I browsed through the top 50 or 100 and where a good ratio caught my eye, I divided the peak processing speed by the number of processors in the system. The G5s in VA Tech's system comfortably exceed the speeds of all other cores except for a few really exotic systems (like the newest Cray), and some of them are running a GHz faster than the G5s. They still leave the Xeon, Itanium & AMD cores in their wake, and probably will go on doing so for the foreseeable future.

  1. Fast iBook

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Yea.

    The one at VA tech could easily add to its monster to get back in the top 10. The fact that it's in the top 50 should tell you something about how the G5 is ideal for power computing, whereas the G4, or duo-core is ideal for "everything else". I have a feeling WWDC will see a powermac or xserve re-configuration with intel, or maybe another whole area of new apple hardware. I guess we'll see!

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    Joined: Dec 1969

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