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Supercomputing Linux Business

SGI Acquires Linux Networx Assets, LNXI Dead? 96

Posted by kdawson
from the tags-involving-cluster-not-welcome dept.
anzha writes "It seems that that Linux Networx, the pioneering Linux supercomputing company, has gone belly up. SGI announced that it has bought the core assets of LNXI. Furthermore, the rumors are that the doors were locked and employees were just given their paychecks. This analysis, on the other hand, claims that SGI has 'made employment offers to many LNXI engineers.' It's unclear what kind of support will be extended to customers of LNXI's Clusterworx Advanced products. What does this mean for the future of Linux supercomputing?"
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SGI Acquires Linux Networx Assets, LNXI Dead?

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  • Re:Belly Up? (Score:2, Informative)

    by Hatta (162192) on Friday February 15, 2008 @10:23AM (#22433972) Journal
    I think the bigger story here is that SGI is still around. Hadn't heard that TLA in a while.
  • by mlwmohawk (801821) on Friday February 15, 2008 @11:09AM (#22434478)
    The economies of "COTS" "Consumer Off The Shelf" technology and the advancement of projects like MPI and PVM, as well as gigabit ethernet has made fast and effective clustering almost as easy as plugging in an Ethernet cable.

    Seriously, while "programming" an application takes some chops, the infrastructure to run it is trivial.

    "In my day" we had, at best, 10mbit ethernet. We had to use special drivers to get out "Dolphin Interconnects" working right. We had to really study the network topology to get the message passing right.

    These days, forget about it. virtually all ethernet is interconnected via a switch so collisions are no longer an issue, switches don't cost thousands of dollars anymore, network interface cards use busmastering PCI or PCI2 (not ISA), The networks are 100x faster. The computers are 100x faster.

    What's the point of a company who's products only tend to mitigate (not eliminate) the inevitable diminishing returns? Can you say buggy whip? Yea, sure, people still make them, but they are not in common use.
  • Re:Belly Up? (Score:4, Informative)

    by richlv (778496) on Friday February 15, 2008 @11:18AM (#22434572)
    then you haven't been paying attention to http://www.top500.org/list/2007/11/100 [top500.org].
    nnote the 3rd position (and there are several others down the list).
  • Re:Belly Up? (Score:2, Informative)

    by mr-aero (1240046) on Friday February 15, 2008 @11:36AM (#22434746)
    They have made offers to LNXI staff according to this article: http://www.hpcwire.com/hpc/2135016.html [hpcwire.com]
  • Re:Belly Up? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Sen.NullProcPntr (855073) on Friday February 15, 2008 @12:03PM (#22435040)

    False. Their net income [google.com] for 2006 was -$146.19 Million while their net income for 2007 was $222.61 Million. You may have been correct but at least in 2007 it looked like they have turned things around.
    Not sure where google gets their numbers from but you shouldn't believe everything you read on the interwebs;-) If you go to the source [sgi.com] you will see nothing but net losses for FY2007 [PDF] [sgi.com] (which ended on June 30, 2007) and FY2008 [PDF] [sgi.com] (which somehow ended December 29, 2007!!!).
    The change in FY dates may have caused the confusion in the totals.

    Disclaimer: I buy high and sell low.
  • by fm6 (162816) on Friday February 15, 2008 @01:40PM (#22436444) Homepage Journal
    In a sense, they did die. They went bankrupt, and their stockholders lost their entire investment. But they had a few products worth saving (massively parallel Itanium and x64 systems), so new investors bought the name and those products. Pretty much a new company, and not a major player.

    It's actually kind of similar to Cray, which SGI bought, ran into the ground, and then sold to Tera Computer. Tera did get a couple of Cray products (others stayed with SGI or had already been sold to Sun), but I suspect that Tera just wanted to rename itself Cray.

    The workstations are no more, and there are no more Irix/MIPS systems. Everything runs Linux. Hence their interest in a high-performance Linux company.

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