Virginia Tech beefs up Mac supercomputer

The fastest Mac supercomputer has gotten faster, thanks to an Xserve makeover.

Virginia Tech plans to announce on Tuesday that its System X now operates at 12.25 teraflops, or 12 trillion calculations per second, up from 10.28 teraflops in its original incarnation, which used 1,100 Power Mac G5 towers. The performance boost comes in large part because Apple Computer has made available to Virginia Tech custom 2.3GHz Xserve machines, faster than the 2GHz processors that power Apple's fastest machines. The school also added 50 additional servers, or nodes, to the system.

Apple said last week that the 2.3GHz machines were a one-off deal for Virginia Tech and not something the company plans to announce for broader consumption anytime soon. "This new number is an increase of almost two teraflops over the original System X," Hassan Aref, dean of Virginia Tech's College of Engineering, said in a statement. "We are extremely pleased with the performance, using the new Apple machines."

News source: C|Net News.com

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