Anyone looking for proof that Microsoft Windows High Performance Server 2008 is emerging as a powerful platform for realistic simulation should consider this new benchmark done in cooperation with Dassault Systems’ SIMULIA brand, Dana Holding Corp. and R Systems, an IT solutions provider.
The trio completed a simulation benchmark using Abaqus FEA software and Windows HPC Server 2008. Using 128 cores of a 256-core Intel Harpertown cluster with Quad Data Rate Infiniband, R Systems performed the benchmark study of a finite element analysis model provided by Dana to evaluate distributed memory performance of Abaqus FEA on Windows. The analysis, which normally takes a little over two days to complete using eight cores, ran to completion in just under three and a half hours, according to officials involved in the benchmark. The team put Abaqus FEA through its paces using the Dana analysis model and the same 32-node compute cluster on both Linux and Windows and officials said, “switching between the two operating systems was straightforward and the performance of Windows HPC Server 2008 was highly competitive.”
Dana Holding saw real potential with the result. “We were extremely pleased by the outcome of the R Systems study,” stated Frank Popielas, Manager Advanced Engineering, Sealing Products Group, Dana Holding, in a prepared release. “The combination of flexible computing clusters and the power of parallel processing enabled by SIMULIA and Microsoft will result in significant time and money savings for Dana and the manufacturing industry as a whole.”
The point of the benchmark, officials underscored, is that Windows HPC 2008, along with other advances, is making supercomputing more accessible and affordable to mainstream companies. By leveraing the combination of Abaqus’ distributed-memory parallel technology and a Windows clustering solution, engineers can solve complex simulation and multiphysics analysis equations in less time, they claim.