Monthly Archives: March 2006

Fortuitous Technologies Expands Performance Services

March 15, 2005
For Immediate Release

Fortuitous Technologies has recently announced the addition of strategic performance engineering services including performance planning, capacity planning, reliability and feasibility studies. The main focus on these services is the cluster, grid, and super computing markets.

Fortuitous Technologies was recently joined by Dr. Dominique Heger, who brings a vast set of talents in performance engineering, modeling, capacity planning and cluster computing to the company. Dr. Heger was a core performance engineer in many large cluster and SMP projects for IBM, including ASCI Purple and ASCI White.

According to Dr. Heger, “An emerging consensus in the performance community is that the unilateral peak performance-centric focus has become misdirected, and that issues such as reliability, availability, maintainability, security, and scalability have emerged as being more important. Applying Performance Engineering techniques early on in a projects allows to design reasonable performance targets into a solution.”

With its new performance engineering emphasis, Fortuitous enhances its position in the performance optimization, capacity planning, reliability, and high-availability markets. These services are widely recognized as critical ingredients to the financial, oil, scientific, and biotechnology computing markets.

About Fortuitous:

Fortuitous provides performance engineering, training, and support services for the Linux, Unix, and high-performance computing world. For further information and enquiries, please contact:

Philip Carinhas, CEO
Fortuitous Technologies, Inc.
Tel: 1-512-351-7783
http://fortuitous.com

Cluster and Grid Computing Flying Blind

Fortuitous Technologies http://fortuitous.com Cluster and grid computing has become extremely popular, yet very few designers are using modern capacity planning techniques to ensure performance.

Cooking on the Grid

Grid computing has become extremely popular in IT circles mainly because of the potential computing power and cost savings. But grid computing is a multifaceted technology that means different things to different people. Some interpret grids to be a heterogeneous group of desktops and servers, which other see it as a group of cluster computers connected together over the internet. Sometimes grids are designed for raw CPU power, others are designed for raw I/O, while others are a combination of data and compute power. Many grids are often designed around a specific set of applications. As we’ll see later, this is why grid and cluster design is strongly tied to its intended purpose.

Grid Lock

Yet despite the importance of strategic design of grids and clusters, very few commercial integrators spend the time or capital to ensure the system’s feasibility and performance. The reason why is many fold; lack of experience, cost issues, ego, or lack of skill resources. An important exception to this is the scientific community whose grids and clusters are often well designed.

A Stitch in Design Saves Nine

So what is really involved in cluster/grid design and planning? First of all, not every application is suited for a cluster and/or grid environment. Customers who switch from an SMP environment to clusters with the intension to someday get into the intra-grid domain are supposed to conduct a feasibility study prior to getting too deep into the cluster business.Second, the customer has to fully understand the current workload behavior, and has to be able to formulate the goals that have to be achieved in a cluster/grid environment. Modeling based sensitivity studies allow the customer to compare (from a relative perspective) design alternatives, and to zoom in on the setup that is most feasible for the environment. As a modeling based approach is recommended at this stage, no money has to be spend yet on any hardware components. In a nutshell, conducting a comprehensive feasibility and design study early on in any cluster/grid project safes the customer substantial money, and replaces the common guessing game with a very pragmatic approach to systems engineering that leads to stable environment with a high acceptance rate from the user community.

Conclusion

Grid/intra-grid/cluster planning and design studies are fundmental parts of the implementation process, having the greatest impact when designed into the final project, encompassing application (workload), network/interconnects, OS, I0, memory, and CPU subsystems, respectively. In almost all circumstances, companies can recoup the design costs in the long run, as fewer firefighting nightmares are necessary.

About Fortuitous

Fortuitous Technologies provides comprehensive performance, planning, and design services based on solid mathematical and statistical methods. They can be contacted at http://Fortuitous.com.