Virtualizing HPC at University of Kentucky

Can you virtualize HPC without sacrificing performance?

Research at the University of Kentucky is a dynamic enterprise, encompassing traditional scholarship, the humanities, health care, and emerging fields and technologies. UKY’s research enterprise received approximately $331.1 million in research awards in 2017, and with more than 50 research centers and institutes, UKY researchers are regularly making discoveries, providing a rich training ground for current students and the next generation of researchers, and advancing the economic growth of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

Traditional HPC workloads are typically massively parallelized on many nodes which require costly low-latency InfiniBand networks and distributed storage systems. As the research community has been changing, the HPC workloads have also been shifting to a majority of single node jobs which do not need the specialized equipment. University of Kentucky wanted to take a fresh approach: create a virtualized environment that supports both cloud tasks and most HPC tasks without sacrificing performance, and without requiring costly specialized HPC hardware. A cross-departmental team got to work.

Remove performance bottlenecks and optimize for complete storage efficiency with Ceph, OpenStack and SoftIron HyperDrive

Download Virtualizing HPC at University of Kentucky Meets the Needs of a New Generation of Researchers for the details of University of Kentucky's approach.

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