Cray CX1 Supercomputer With Windows HPC Server 2008 and Intel Xeon Processors Starts at $25,000 and Provides "Ease-of-Everything" for New Users of HPC
SEATTLE, WA and REDMOND, WA, Sep 16, 2008 (MARKET WIRE via COMTEX News Network) -- Supercomputer leader Cray Inc. (NASDAQ: CRAY) and Microsoft
Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) today introduced the new Cray CX1
supercomputer pre-installed with Windows HPC Server 2008. With U.S.
list prices starting at $25,000 to over $60,000, "ease-of-everything"
features and the ability to fit into standard office environments and
workflows, the new product reflects Microsoft and Cray's shared goal
to drive high productivity computing farther into the mainstream in a
broad array of markets including financial services, aerospace,
automotive, petroleum, life sciences, government, academic and
Studies released by the Council on Competitiveness and the Defense
Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) found that nearly all large
firms using HPC consider it indispensable for their ability to
compete and survive, but smaller companies, as well as workgroups and
departments in larger firms, have been hampered by the cost of HPC
systems and a lack of access to in-house experts to help them use
The Cray CX1 supercomputer was designed from the ground up to address
these barriers. It is the most affordable supercomputer ever offered
by Cray and is designed to be easy to purchase, deploy, operate and
upgrade. Purpose-built for offices, laboratories and university
departments, the Cray CX1 is the world's highest-performing computer
that uses standard office power.
The Cray CX1 product incorporates up to 8 nodes and 16 Intel Xeon
processors, either dual or quad core; delivers up to 64 gigabytes of
memory per node; and provides up to 4 terabytes of internal storage.
Systems can be configured with a mix of compute, storage and
visualization blades to meet customers' individual requirements. The
quiet, deskside supercomputer features Windows HPC Server 2008 and
interoperates with Linux. A three-year warranty with next-day,
on-site Cray-certified support is standard.
"Windows HPC Server 2008, in combination with the Cray CX1
supercomputer, will provide outstanding sustained performance on
applications," said Vince Mendillo, director, HPC at Microsoft Corp.
"This combined solution will enable companies in various sectors to
unify their Windows desktop and server workflows. Many Microsoft
financial services customers, for example, want to unify back-office
modeling and simulation with the work of front-office trading desks."
"IDC research shows that HPC has been one of the highest-growth IT
markets during the past five years and the segment for HPC systems
priced below $100,000 is headed for continued growth," said Earl
Joseph, IDC's HPC program vice president. "The Cray HPC brand name
and experience, combined with Microsoft's strategy of extending the
familiar Windows environment upward to the server level, gives the
Cray CX1 solution strong potential for exploiting the anticipated
growth of this market segment."
"Cray sees Microsoft Windows becoming an increasingly important force
in the HPC market," said Ian Miller, senior vice president of sales
and marketing at Cray. "With the Cray CX1 high productivity system and
Windows HPC Server 2008, we're bringing the power of Cray
supercomputing to a much wider range of new users with an affordable
and adaptable system that provides incredible value and is easy to
install, program and use with a broad array of applications from
independent software vendors (ISVs)."
The Cray CX1 high productivity system is also the first Cray product
to incorporate Intel processors and the first milestone of the unique
collaboration Cray and Intel announced in April to develop a range of
HPC systems and technologies over the next several years to address
various segments of the HPC industry.
"Taking advantage of the energy-efficient performance of the Intel
Xeon processor 5400 series, Cray's CX1 system will bring many HPC
capabilities to the office that were previously confined to the
datacenter, enabling more users to employ supercomputing to help them
solve some of their most difficult computational problems," said
Richard Dracott, Intel's General Manager of High Performance
Computing, "In addition, we continue to collaborate with Cray on
developing the supercomputing technologies of the future, aimed at
all segments of the HPC market."
Scientists at the Laboratory of Neuro Imaging at UCLA plan to use a
Cray CX1 with Microsoft HPC Server 2008 for mathematical modeling and
visualization. This will support their development of advanced
computational algorithms and scientific approaches for the
comprehensive and quantitative mapping of brain structure and
"We are very excited about utilizing the Cray CX1 to support our
research activities," said Rico Magsipoc, Chief Technology Officer for
the Laboratory of Neuro Imaging. "The work that we do in brain
research is computationally intensive but will ultimately have a huge
impact on our understanding of the relationship between brain
structure and function, in both health and disease. Having the power
of a Cray supercomputer that is simple and compact is very attractive
and necessary, considering the physical constraints we face in our
data centers today."
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) is the worldwide leader in
software, services and solutions that help people and businesses
realize their full potential.
About Cray Inc.
As a global leader in supercomputing, Cray provides highly advanced
supercomputers and world-class services and support to government,
industry and academia. Cray technology enables scientists and
engineers to achieve remarkable breakthroughs by accelerating
performance, improving efficiency and extending the capabilities of
their most demanding applications. Cray's Adaptive Supercomputing
vision will result in innovative next-generation products that
integrate diverse processing technologies into a unified
architecture, allowing customers to surpass today's limitations and
meeting the market's continued demand for realized performance. Go to
www.cray.com for more information.
Cray is a registered trademark, and Cray CX1 is a trademark of Cray
Inc. Other product and service names mentioned herein are the
trademarks of their respective owners.
Editor's Note: Quotes from leading independent software vendors
(ISVs) and an early customer appear on the following pages.
ISVs and Early Customer Quote Page
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
"PNNL is delighted to be an early customer for the Cray CX1. We
intend to use this system as a test-bed for several important
applications running in a Microsoft Windows HPC Server 2008
environment. The Cray CX1's small physical size makes it ideal for
workgroup computing," said Dr. Moe Khaleel, Lab Fellow and Director,
Computational Sciences & Mathematics Division of Pacific Northwest
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
"We intend to use the Cray CX1 to run environmental modeling
simulations as part of the Performance Assessment Institute (PAI)
consortium led by Sandia National Laboratory in conjunction with
UNLV. The CX1 is of particular interest to us because of its ability
to support Windows-based applications like GoldSim," said Joe
Lombardo, Director, National Supercomputing Center for Energy and the
Environment (NSCEE) at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
"With Milliman's Windows-based MG-ALFA(R) financial projection tool
now available on the new, office-ready Cray CX1 supercomputer, the
opportunity to dramatically speed up or expand the analysis associated
with projections and product pricing is available to everyone," said
Pat Renzi, Milliman MG-ALFA Product Manager and Principal. "We see
significant opportunity with the Milliman-Microsoft-Cray combination
as it reduces the financial and human resource cost of accessing a
Interactive Supercomputing, Inc.
"STAR-P boosts productivity of domain experts by making it
dramatically easier to parallelize applications for high performance
computers, using MATLAB or Python. The Cray CX1 supercomputer
promises to expand the market for STAR-P through its unprecedented
affordability and ease-of-use, in combination with Cray-certified
quality and service," said David Rich, VP of Marketing at Interactive
"FieldView is the leading post-processing software tool to help CFD
practitioners understand scientific and engineering data and
communicate results. The affordable, easy-to-use Cray CX1
supercomputer will allow even small firms and workgroups to
effectively address the large data bottleneck in HPC enabled CFD
workflows as they post-process and visualize supercomputer-size data
with FieldView," said Roger R. Rintala, Strategic Marketing Manager
at Intelligent Light.
"Our STAR-CCM+ solution on the new Cray CX1 supercomputer will make
advanced engineering simulations affordable and easy to run even for
those who are new to high performance computing," said David Vaughn,
Director, Marketing/Aerospace and Defense Sector. "We're pleased to
extend our long-standing collaboration with an industry leader such
"SIMULIA, the Dassault Systemes brand for realistic simulation, and
Cray have collaborated closely for decades to keep the performance of
Abaqus FEA software running on Cray supercomputers in the forefront
of the HPC industry," said Matt Dunbar, SIMULIA's Performance and
Parallel Technology Area Leader. "The new, cost-effective Cray CX1
supercomputer provides HPC capabilities to a wider range of
simulation users. The engineering community will now have access to
the compute power needed to run large finite element analysis (FEA)
and multiphysics engineering models quickly and affordably."
"The Cray CX1 workgroup supercomputer is needed in the engineering
market. In 2007, we shopped around for a system like this that is easy
to specify, buy, configure, use, and upgrade, and nothing fit the
bill," said Darin McGinnis, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at
CEI. "This will be a good fit for our EnSight visualization
"PBS Professional on the affordable new Cray CX1 supercomputer will
make job submission and workload scheduling easy for scientists,
designers, financial analysts and engineers across all environments.
In an era of shrinking budgets, this joint solution will enable
administrators to get maximum value from computing resources through
greater efficiency and utilization." said Bill Nitzberg, CTO, PBS
GridWorks, Altair Engineering. "In addition, combining RADIOSS,
Altair's next-generation multidisciplinary finite-element solver,
will provide improved simulation quality and speed for advanced
product development. We look forward to expanding our successful and
long-standing relationship with Cray and work together to make PBS
Professional and RADIOSS available on the Cray CX1."
"The affordable Cray CX1 supercomputer will make Cray's renowned
supercomputing standards available to more people than ever before,"
stated Michael Jackson, president of Cluster Resources. "We are
pleased to expand our successful partnership with Cray to desktop
supercomputing through the Cray CX1 that can dynamically switch
between Windows HPC Server 2008 and Linux. Moab on Cray's CX1 will
increase flexibility and productivity and decrease costs for
organizations in scheduling, managing, monitoring, and reporting on
Windows, Linux, or mixed-OS workloads."
"ANSYS is very pleased to be working with Cray on performance
benchmarking of the new Cray CX1 supercomputer, which should be an
excellent solution for our customers doing increasingly detailed and
sophisticated engineering simulation. The engineered scalability of
ANSYS technology enables users to see outstanding performance from
the desktop all the way to high performance supercomputers such as
the Cray CX1," said Chris Reid, vice president of marketing for
ANSYS, Inc. "Cray's focus on industry standards is consistent with
our open strategy and makes this an affordable, easy-to-use solution
that will help our users boost their productivity and bring superior
products to market faster."
"Through our partnership with Red Hat, Platform Computing has joined
with industry pioneer and leader Cray Inc. to offer Cray CX1 customers
the option to easily deploy, run and manage the entire life cycle of
its cluster with the Red Hat HPC Solution," said Tripp Purvis, Vice
President, Business Development at Platform Computing. "The Red Hat
HPC Solution is a fully integrated, easy-to-deploy, Linux-based
software stack leveraging the powerful cluster software framework of
Platform Open Cluster Stack 5 and the world-class performance,
security and stability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux."
SOURCE: Cray Inc.; Microsoft Corporation