Open source vs. commercial parallel file systems: Truth and fiction in a HPC World

An article by Jim Donovan on may interest readers. With enterprises increasing their use of emerging technologies such as AI, machine learning and augmented reality to improve productivity and efficiency, they are looking for the best high-performance data storage infrastructure to support business operations and make automated decisions in real-time.

HPC data storage systems rely on parallel file systems to deliver maximum performance and there are two options to choose from: Open source or commercial parallel file systems.

Opinions abound on both, so it’s worth examining what’s hype and what’s real. Jim Donovan explores the following topics:

·         Cost of acquisition – What’s better than free?

·         Confusing customisation with flexibility

·         Elimination of the ‘performance’ gap


Key quotes from the article include:

“Today, the need for high performance data storage infrastructure in commercial enterprise cannot be understated”

 “By the time CIOs factor in the cost of additional staffing requirements to implement and manage an open source parallel file system, there’s quite a price tag associated with the ostensibly ‘free’ purchase”

Today, the need for high performance data storage infrastructure in commercial enterprise cannot be understated. The massive volumes of data generated from emerging technologies such as AI and machine learning is growing exponentially due to the ease of application integration with enterprise business, covering all industries from manufacturing to life sciences.

Fueled by hardware innovations and software-driven services, HPC data storage systems are allowing enterprises to use new technology to achieve greater levels of productivity and operational efficiency than ever before, and it’s the outstanding performance capabilities of parallel file systems that are servicing demand.

Concluding, the author said that when all evidence is considered, enterprise CIOs who want to avoid potential operational and reputational risk of failure will see that the benefits of choosing a commercial parallel file system strongly outweighs the exposure of undertaking the task to finance in-house resources and build the infrastructure required to implement an open source solution.

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