Microsoft Releases Beta Version of its High-Performance Computing OS

At a keynote speech to Supercomputing 2005, Microsoft’s Bill Gates said Microsoft has released the beta 2 version of Windows Compute Cluster Server 2003, the company’s first high-performance computing OS, and is funding joint research projects at 10 academic centers worldwide.

In addition to computational modeling and clusters, Gates addressed the transformation resulting from the availability of massive amounts of real-world data from low-cost sensors. This powerful combination creates new opportunities, but also new challenges, particularly with how to manage, search, analyze and publish that data and the resulting conclusions, he said.

Microsoft Windows Compute Cluster Server 2003 is scheduled for release in the first half of 2006. The company is working with software partners across the manufacturing, life sciences and geosciences, and other industries to create apps for the new OS. This effort includes integrating applications with the Microsoft Message Passing Interface and the Microsoft job scheduler, and offering performance-tuning technologies to run on Windows Compute Cluster Server 2003. Microsoft also is working with Intel to provide software vendors with 64-bit hardware, software and tools from both companies, and joint on-site engineering assistance.

Gates said Microsoft has made multiyear, multimillion-dollar investments in joint research projects at high-performance computing centers at universities in the United States, Russia, Japan, England and Germany.