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Addison Snell Dan Olds Paris-Andrel Bridgers HPC Technology Survey 2021: Storage Technologies and Configurations




Intersect360 Research surveyed the High Performance Computing (HPC) user community on a wide range of technology issues. The complete study analyzes users’ current computing systems, storage systems, networks, cloud computing usage, and selected purchasing criteria. Our goal in this analysis is to provide an overview of how HPC systems are configured, including the breadth of technologies most commonly used.

Intersect360 Research defines HPC as the use of servers, clusters, and supercomputers—plus associated software, tools, components, storage, and services—for scientific, engineering, or analytical tasks that are particularly intensive in computation, memory usage, or data management. Intersect360 Research reports available in this HPC Technology Survey report series include the following segmentations:

  • Server Technologies and Configurations: including system vendors installed, segmentation of systems into classes (entry-level, midrange, high-end, supercomputer), system interconnects, and usage of liquid cooling. 
  • Storage Technologies and Configurations: including total active HPC data; storage configurations spanning on-node, attached storage arrays, and cloud storage; parallel file system usage; and interdependence of storage and server elements for purchasing.
  • Processing Elements—CPUs and Accelerators: including installations and user preferences for both CPUs and accelerators, independently and in combination, plus configuration options and interconnects.
  • Cloud Computing: including proportion of computing and storage in public cloud for HPC and top named cloud vendors.

This report provides a detailed examination of storage elements, including total amount of active HPC data and storage types among responding HPC user sites. This analysis also includes the purchasing interdependence between servers and storage and the usage of various parallel file systems. This includes on-node, storage array, and disk archive storage types, as well as parallel file systems for storage.




Methodology 4

What Is HPC? 5

Total Responses 5


Definitions 6

Active HPC Data 6

Figure 1: Total Active HPC Data 7

Commercial/Industrial Sector 7

Academic Sector 7

Government Sector 7

Storage Types and Configurations 8

Figure 2: Storage Types & Configurations 8

Storage Acquisition 8

Figure 3: How is Storage Acquired in your Organization? 9

Parallel File Systems 10

Figure 4: Parallel File Systems 11



Table A1: Geographic Region of Respondent 13

Table A2: Economic Sector of Respondent Organization 13

Table A3: Number of Employees for Respondent Organization 13

Figure A1: Role of Survey Respondent in Organization 14

Figure A2: HPC Purchasing Responsibility of Respondent 14

Figure A3: Total Annual HPC Budget of Responding Organization 15


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