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spacer spacer spacer spacer spacer February 07, 2008

Condor 1000 taps unused resources

The concept behind “strength in numbers” applies to more than just manpower. Success in research computing is driven by access to a large supply of individual processors, which is the incentive for RIT’s Condor 1000 project.

As part of this effort, the university recently surpassed its goal of harnessing the power of 1,000 processing cores by tapping into unused computing cycles at RIT. Condor 1000 allows researchers, including students, to run as many jobs as possible at the same time. The easiest way to do that is to tap into computers on campus when they’re not being used. In many cases, those opportunities occur overnight.

“Multiplying the power of a single desktop computer by 1,000 or more is a tremendous increase in personal computing capacity and extends the boundaries of research problems that can be computed,” explains Gurcharan Khanna, RIT’s director of research computing. “Essentially, this is a campus computational grid.”

Certain types of computer problems are ideal for the Condor environment. These problems can be separated into hundreds or thousands of little jobs that run independently, but the results can be aggregated at the end. The ability to do this at relatively little cost is another of the project’s benefits.

The RIT Condor pool continues to grow as additional departments grant access to their computing resources. For more information, visit rc.rit.edu/condor1000.

Paul Stella

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