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Cray unveils XE6 supercomputers
Based on AMD Opteron 6100 chips
Supercomputer maker Cray has unveiled the XE6, a new beast based on AMD's latest Opteron 6100 processors and new interconnect technology, Gemini. The new tech should allow the system to make much better use of multicore processors and deliver a three fold reduction in latencies compared to current solutions such as SeaStar.
The XE6, formerly codenamed Baker, can scale to more than 1 million cores and deliver petascale computing over a wide range of HPC applications. A million cores surely puts quad and six-core desktops into perspective.
Cray will start shipping the new supercomputer in early Q3. However, it has already landed more than $200 million in orders for various scientific institutions, such as the US Department of Energy and the Korean Meteorogical Administration. We're guessing that's the South Korean one, as in North Korea the Dear Leader is in control of the weather.
Cray has used AMD chips, including six-core Istanbuls, in several of its previous designs. However, the new Magny Course Opterons pack 8 to 12 cores and Cray has already embraced them for another supercomputer in its offer, the XT6. The XE6 will run Cray's Linux Environment OS, so it won't feel the need to update itself every few seconds like a Microsoft rig and it won't google itself like an Apple.