Intel, HP Team Up To Open Enterprise Doors For HPC

Intel and Hewlett-Packard on Monday said that they will collaborate to expand accessibility of high performance computing (HPC) to enterprises during the International Supercomputing Conference in Germany.

The two companies will launch a Center of Excellence in Houston to "better support the North American market," reaching out to a new spectrum of commercial enterprises in order to come to grips with an accelerated demand for HPC due to a "perfect storm of market dynamics," according to HP.

On Intel's part, the union is part of the company's overarching collaboration effort with OEMs to push higher-level solutions and scalable system networks at the industry level.

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"We have all these developments, like high-performance networks connecting the system, new memory technologies, Xeon Phi processors, and so forth, and we want to create this framework under which they can all exist," Charles Wuischpard, vice president Data Center Group, general manager Workstations and High Performance Computing at Intel, told CRN.

"In order to create a programming model on top of all this technology, we engaged in conversations with OEM partners. HP was one of those OEMs that came forward and said they were interested in collaborating at the industry level," he said.

The companies will both provide technologies and expertise that they hope will simplify the deployment of HPC in niche vertical industries, like oil and gas, and financial services.

HP will provide its HPC solutions framework as part of the collaboration, based on its Apollo servers, which are now optimized to support industry-specific software applications from independent software vendors (ISVs).

The Apollo product line will leverage Intel's technology from its HPC scalable system framework, which includes next-generation Intel Xeon processors and Intel Omni-Path interconnect technology.

"Intel's HPC scalable system framework is a flexible blueprint for both computationally and data-intensive computing that provides optimized system performance at any scale, while maintaining reliability and ease of programming through open standards," said Wuischpard.

HP and Intel stated that they also will bring in experts to the Center of Excellence, who will support customers in planning, developing, deploying and managing HPC solutions, as well as help in enabling customers and developers to carry out proof of concept and benchmarks to improve HPC workload infrastructure.

The partnership comes as HPC faces growing demand from enterprise customers across the board. IDC forecasts the case compute server market will reach $15.2 billion in 2019 as organizations transform how they utilize HPC technologies for big data workloads and analytics.

One HP and Intel partner, who wished to remain anonymous, said bringing cheaper, more accessible HPC options for large enterprises was inevitable as the market becomes more competitive in terms of pricing, and as more enterprise customers move to cloud-based applications.

"There seems to be a gradual shift for large enterprise customers to move away from the more expensive and proprietary tier 1 computing platforms to the lesser expensive and open architecture white-box solutions," said the partner. "Therefore, it may be only a matter of time for HP… to offer lesser expensive solutions to enterprise customers, before these customers move to their competitors' platforms."