JazzNet is a dedicated cluster of personal computers (PCs) used for applied mathematics and scientific computations at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). This resource is used as a personal supercomputer to carry out computational tasks too large for conventional workstations. The PC cluster is dubbed JazzNet because its nodes are named after great Jazz artists: Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, and so on.
Built using off-the-shelf components (Intel Pentium-II motherboards, Linux, Fast Ethernet), it can achieve multi-Gflop performance for around $15K. But more importantly, on real applications it competes surprisingly well with systems costing 10-100 times more. Because the system is inexpensive (about the cost of a high-end workstation), it can be used as a personal supercomputer, rather than a resource that must be shared by many people.
We use JazzNet both to distribute sequential jobs for increased throughput, and also as a parallel processing environment, using PVM and MPI.
Photos: Bob Parent Photo Archive
Development Status: Historical: no longer maintained.
Last Modified: 03/31/2004