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SlashTCO.com: UK case study - Inpharmatica's 1100 processor supercomputer runs on Linux

Feb 02, 2001, 14:16 (1 Talkback[s])

[ Thanks to Russ Foster for this link. ]

"Inpharmatica, a UK based bioinformatics company, is currently running Europe's largest commercial bioinformatics supercomputer - and it runs on Linux. Pat Leach, the IT Director at Inpharmatica, had come from a commercial IT background and perspective. The SlashTCO team visited Leach, and his colleague Stuart Moodie, at Inpharmatica's West London HQ to find out more about the company's high-end Linux deployment."

"Inpharmatica was founded about 2 years ago from the origins of an academic research group at UCL, led by Prof. Janet Thornton FRS, CBE. The initial intent was to capitalise on the commercial value of the expertise to be found within the research group. Since that time it has moved from a startup to a leader in bio-informatics."

"Linux is used in two major areas in the company - as the platform of choice for the supercomputer and as the desktop operating system for the majority of the technical staff - developers and scientists. These account for about 20 of the 50 staff."

"However, not having Linux on the desktop companywide has not prevented an open source strategy for the supercomputer farm. At present there are some 600 machines in the supercomputer. Originally this system was developed using Red Hat Linux 5, but when the need to upgrade arrived Inpharmatica decided to switch to the Debian distribution as the systems adminstrator felt that it would provide greater stability and security."

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