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HPC User Site Census: All Networks

by Christopher G. Willard, Ph.D.,Addison Snell, Laura Segervall
for Intersect360 Research
June 2017
 
This report, part of the Intersect360 Research Site Census series, provides an examination of the server interconnects and network characteristics found at a sample of HPC user sites. Intersect360 Research surveyed a broad range of users about their current computer system installations, storage systems, networks, middleware, and software supporting these computer installations.
 
The goal in this analysis of networks is to examine the installations by network type and by supplier across the three locales (system, storage, and LAN) within the HPC user communities.
 
Key findings of the survey include the following:
  • Ethernet and InfiniBand are the two primary network protocols that compete across all three locales: system interconnects, storage networks, and LANs. Ethernet is the most prevalent for all three locales when data rates are disregarded. For the higher performance interconnects, InfiniBand (40G in particular) continues to be used in the greatest number of systems reported in our study.
  • About two-thirds of the surveyed sites reported both Ethernet and InfiniBand installed at their site.
  • 10 Gigabit Ethernet has the most representation for storage networks, capturing the upgrade business from Gigabit Ethernet, and surpassing InfiniBand installations.
  • Mellanox is the supplier used most often for system interconnects, with 42% of mentions, and also for storage networks, with 35% of mentions. Cisco continues to be the leading supplier for the LAN market, with 46% of the mentions.
  • Mellanox gained share in every locale. Mellanox accounted for 42% share of system interconnects reported in 2016 versus 40% last year, 35% share of storage networks in 2016 versus 28% in 2015, and 13% LANs versus 11% in 2015.
  • Ethernet, as expected, accounts for the majority of LAN network implementations reported at these sites, with both 10 Gigabit Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet each accounting for 35% of the mentions. In this report, 10 Gigabit Ethernet nudge slightly ahead two more LANs reported than Gigabit Ethernet. We expect Gigabit Ethernet will slowly decline in share over the coming years.
 
COMPANIES MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT 
 
Ace Computers
Amazon Web Services
Arista
Aspen
Asus
AT&T
Atipa
Avaya - Nortel
BNC
Broadcom
Brocade
Cisco Systems
CITRIX
Cray
DataDirect Networks
Dell EMC
Digisol
D-Link
Edgecore
Emulex
Eurotech
Extreme Networks
Flextronics
Fujitsu
H3C
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
Huawei
IBM
Intel
Juniper Networks
Lenovo
Linksys
Linktel
Mellanox
Micro Focus
Microway
Mikrotik
Myricom
NetAPP
NetGear
Oracle
Penguin Computing
Qlogic
Qualcom
Quanta
SGI
SMC Networks
SolarFlare
Supermicro
Tikona
Trendnet
TrueScale
 
TECHNOLOGIES COVERED IN THIS REPORT
HPC system elements
Systems, clusters
Storage elements
Storage systems
Interconnect elements
System interconnects
Storage interconnects
LAN interconnects
Interconnect standards
Ethernet
InfiniBand
Fibre Channel
Other interconnect standards
 
TABLE OF CONTENTS
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 1
COMPANIES MENTIONED IN THIS REPORT 2
TECHNOLOGIES COVERED IN THIS REPORT 3
INTRODUCTION 5
RESULTS AND ANALYSIS 6
Comparison of Network Types Across Three Locales 6
Table 1: Installed Interconnect and Network at Three Locales 7
Figure 1: Share of Sites by Protocol 8
Figure 2: Share of Sites using Ethernet and InfiniBand by Locale 9
Interconnect/Network Suppliers at Each Locale 10
Table 2: Top Named Suppliers Installed at Three Locales 10
CONCLUSIONS 11
Figure 3: Transition to Higher Speed for InfiniBand System Interconnects 11
Figure 4: System Interconnect, Storage Network, and LAN Suppliers 12
Appendix A: Suppliers of Networks by Locale 13
Table A1: Suppliers of Interconnects and Networks by Locale, Total Sites 13
Appendix B: Methodology and Demographics 15
Methodology 15
Demographics 16


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