Showing posts from 2008

Photos from the IGT2008

The IGT 2008 annual event just ended. Here is a link to a few photos I took using my mobile phone.

IGT HPC Work Group Meeting

- Intel® Parallel Software Tools for HPC and Multi-Core Computing
- Erlang for 5 ninesMonday, December 8th, 2008IGT Offices, Maskit 4, 5th Floor, Hertzliya. 14:00-14:15: OPENING - Avner & Guy14:15-15:00: Intel® Parallel Software Tools for HPC and Multi-Core ComputingHerbert Cornelius, Director Advanced Computing Center EMEA and
Alexander Supalov, Engineering Manager Intel Cluster Tools
Abstract As we see Moore's Law still continuing, more and more parallelism is introduced to all computing platforms and on all levels of integration and programming. Especially in the area of High-Performance Computing (HPC) users can entertain a combination of different hardware and software parallel architectures and programming environments. Those technologies range from vectorization and SIMD computation over shared memory multi-threading (e.g. OpenMP) to distributed memory message passing (e.g. MPI) on cluster systems. But it also puts more and more demand on software (development) tools for p…

VPN over Cellular

I like my Nokia 6210 Navigator, I use it to connect securely via VPN to the Ben-Gurion University domain when I am out of office. Below are two pictures that show how it works.I connect the phone via a USB cable (Bluetooth is also possible), then I use the Nokia PC-Suite to connect to the Internet while the mobile phone acts as a MODEM.I then use the VPN (RSA SecurID) to connect to the campus. Two comments:1) To make the test fully reliable the WiFi was completely switched-off using the airplane mode button located at the front of my T61 ThinkPad notebook.2) I wrote this post using the new Microsoft Live Writer Beta – a multi-blog- editor which I find useful.

The 2008 Comsol Conference in Tel Aviv

Comsol is an interesting tool for Multi-Physics simulations.
Today took place the annual conference of Comsol in Israel, the agenda is described below:

Here are two photos I took using my cellphone:

The conference building:

I have serious doubts how one can do serious Multi-Physics simulations without serious Parallel Processing capabilities. The current version, 3.5, of Comsol has no Distributed Parallel Processing support, e.g. MPI and a limited Multi-Core support but not at the user level; No Parallel Computing commands and no external Parallel Tools like Star-P. This limits the problem size that can be simulated.
However, for sure it is an excellent tool for education.

IGT HPC Work Group Meeting - Intel TBB & Microsoft HPC 2008 Server

Monday, October 27th, 2008.IGT Offices, Maskit 4, 5th Floor, Hertzliya.14:00-14:15: OPENING - Avner & Guy14:15-15:00: High-Performance and Productivity Computing with Windows HPCMr. Doron Caspin,Architect Evangelist, Microsoft Israel.

Abstract It's a fact: Windows HPC Server 2008 (HPCS) combines the power of the Windows Server platform with rich, out-of-the-box functionality to help improve the productivity and reduce the complexity of your HPC environment. Windows HPC Server 2008 can efficiently scale to thousands of processing cores and provides a comprehensive set of deployment, administration, and monitoring tools that are easy to deploy, manage, and integrate with your existing infrastructure.This lecture will provide an overview on Microsoft HPC solution.15:00-15:15 Break15:15-16:00: Introduction to Intel Threading Building Blocks (TBB)Dr. Ami Marowka, Department of Software Engineering, Shenkar College of Engineering and Design, Israel.AbstractIntel Threading Building Bl…

IGT 2008 - Cloud Computing Conference


IGT2008 - The World Summit of Cloud Computing

IGT2008 - The World Summit of Cloud Computing conference registration is now open. IGT is pleased to announce the opening of registration for the IGT2008 conference to be held in Israel on 1-2 December 2008. IGT2008 will focus on Cloud Computing, and its impact on the enterprise IT, the next generation data center, SaaS and Utility Computing. This year, keynote speakers will include top technology leaders from companies that are creating and influencing the Cloud Computing technologies and business. Early Bird prices are available until 16 October therefore it is advised to register in advance! See you at IGT2008!
Cloud Computing - The New IT Economy

Avner Algom
General Manager
The Israeli Association of Grid Technologies (IGT)

Connecting the dots


Cloud Computing - A case study

Next time you will need computing resources, e.g. a web server, get it from the cloud, it is simple and easy!
This post is not meant to be a full tutorial but only a brief description of my own personal experience playing with Amazon EC2.
For more complete information about working with Amazon EC2 check this or this references or browse here for additional documentation

Step 1: Create an Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) account. Pricing and additional information is available here.
Step 2: Download the Amazon command line API tools and/or install the Elasticfox - Firefox plug-in.
Step 3: Set the security keys to allow SSH.
Step 4: Configure the Elasticfox (for example open port 22 for SSH and port 80 for http in my case).
Step 5. I used one of the pre-configured Amazon Machine Images (AMI), therefore starting the machine was immediate.
Step 6: Enjoy the new virtual machine - see screen shots below:

Figure 1: The Amazon Elasticfox GUI.

Figure 2: Connecting to the machine via SSH.

Figure 3: Star…

Yes, good idea, I want to move or copy


Farewell Madison Wisconsin

I left Madison today after a visit of a week.
A great city, a great university and great people.
I Hope to visit there again soon.

Grids are Dead! Or are they?

Grids are Dead! Or are they?
By Wolfgang Gentzsch, DEISA; Duke University.
Published in GridToday, June 16, 2008.
See also one of my previous posts: "The End of Grid Computing?" from October 2007.

How to securely connect to the BGU from Linux

The following instructions apply for connecting from outside the campus:

Step 1: VPN access:
Install CheckPoint SNX VPN tool (SSL Network eXtender) for Linux.
( the current version I installed works with OpenSuse 10.3 but crashes for Fedora core 9 )
telzur@gtz2:~> snx -s -u username@vpn
then provide your PIN and the Secure-ID code.

Step 2: Connect to the Windows terminal server using remote-desktop:
telzur@gtz2:~> rdesktop -u user-name -d group-of-users

and you will get this window to login:

Erlang - software for a concurrent world

I would like to recommend watching the following on-line presentation:
InfoQ: Erlang - software for a concurrent world by joe Amstrong, Erlang's principle inventor.
These days I am also reading his book.
Erlang is interesting and intrguing

IGT2008 - IGT Annual Event - Cloud Computing the Next Grid Evolution - Dec. 1-2, 2008 Hertzelia, Israel

The event announcement
The Israeli Association of Grid Technologies (IGT)

Grid Computing in Israel

Last week I attendded the HP-Cast 10 conference which took place in Singapore.
At the conference, as a delegate of the Israeli Association of Grid Technologies, I gave an overview presentation about Grid Computing in Israel. The presentation PDF file is available here.

Multi-Core 2008

Ben-Gurion University

Multi-Core 2008
May 14, 2008
The event program

My profile photo

My profile photo is in fact a business card with my details inside. It is a barcode readable by Nokia phones with a built-in camera, e.g. N-95.
For more information about this cool thing check this link:
Point and shoot your camera phone at the mobile code and if you have a barcode reader preinstalled you will be able to store my details.
Unfortunately, my mobile phone has no camera so I can not check it myself. If you have a mobile phone with a camera and barcode reader please send me a feedback if it really works.

IGT Grid-HPC WG Meeting: UNICORE - A European Grid Technology

THE NEXT GRID-HPC WORK GROUP MEETINGMonday, March 31th, 2008IGT Offices, Maskit 4, 5th Floor, HertzliyaAgenda:14:00-14:15: OPENING - Avner & Guy14:15-15:15: UNICORE - A European Grid TechnologySpeaker: Dr. Achim StreitHead of Division "Distributed Systems and Grid Computing"Jülich Supercomputing CenterInsitute for Advanced SimulationForschungszentrum Jülich GmbHAbstract: The development of UNICORE started back in 1997 with two projects funded by the German ministry of education and research (BMBF). UNICORE is a vertically integrated Grid middleware, which provides a seamless, secure, and intuitive access to distributed resources and data and provides components on all levels of a Grid architecture from an easy-to-use graphical client down to the interfaces to the Grid resources. Furthermore, UNICORE has a strong support for workflows while security is established through X.509 certificates. Since 2002 UNICORE is continuously improved to mature production ready qualit…

Cloud Computing is here to stay

First trials with Xcerion XIOS/3 Beta.

A remote OS and applications consumed completely from the "Cloud". All you need is a Web Browser.

Xcerion looks cool although at the moment it works only on top of IE6+ and not yet on top of Firefox.
The response time is reasonable and the Windows Manager is nice and intuitive:

(click on the image to enlarge)

A thin client/OLPC and Xcerion can be an interesting cheap computing platform.

Cellular Automata - Part II, Using Condor

My post on Cellular Automata from January 12 was not put there by mistake. I want to use it as a starting point for a couple of exercises in my Parallel Processing course.
In that post I gave a few drawings that differ only by the generating rule number.

Today, I am going to show how using the Condor High-Throughput Computing system allows to handle in a very simple way large volume of computations.

I used this simple Condor submit file:

universe = vanilla
executable =
Error = err.$(Process)
Output= out.$(Process)
Log = log.$(Process)
Arguments = $(Process)
Queue 256

And was able to compute the whole set of 256 rules (jobs) with the same effort of computing a single rule.
I submitted the task to my Personal Condor on my laptop and was not disappointed; After a while I got all the outputs happily waiting for post processing.

A special lecture at the BGU by Barton Miller

Distinguished Lecture Guest: Prof. Barton P. Miller
Computer Science Department
University of Wisconsin - Madison
Monday, January 28th, 2008 14:00-16:00 in the Saal Auditorium (202), Alon Hi-Tech Bldg (37)
at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva

A Framework for Binary Code Analysis and Static and Dynamic Patching
Barton P. Miller
Computer Sciences Department
University of Wisconsin
Madison, WI 53706

Tools that analyze and modify binary code are crucial to many areas of computer science, including cyber forensics, program tracing, debugging, testing, performance profiling, performance modeling, and software engineering. While there are many tools used to support these activities, these tools have significant limitations in functionality, efficiency, accuracy, portability, and availability.

To overcome these limitations, we are actively working on the design and implementation of a new framewor…

The mysteries of Cellular Automata

I recently bought Stephen Wolfram's book "New Kind of Science". The book is interesting and I highly recommend it.
In the spirit of one of my favorite phrases by Confucius: "I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand" I decided to reproduce some of the first examples that are given in the book. I wrote about 100 lines of Python code and enjoyed the beauty of the results.
The whole book is available online and I am referring here to the plots on page 55. Below enclosed a few of my plots.

Rule 25:

Rule 22:

Rule 30:

Rule 60:

Rule 73:

It is still a mystery for me the richness of the patterns that are produced from very simple interaction rules.
I would call it Social Networking by pixels.

The next IGT HPC work group meeting

Monday, January 14th, 2008
IGT Offices, Maskit 4, 5th Floor, Hertzliya
14:00-14:15: OPENING - Avner & Guy14:15-15:00: “GridGain – Java Grid Computing Made Simple”Speaker: Nikita Ivanov, Founder GridGain Systems
Duration: 45minutes
Language: English

This presentation is intended to provide a high level overview on
GridGain– an open source Java grid computing framework. Presentation is
arranged to provide both the canonical overview of the software
framework and live coding demonstration underscoring powerful simplicity
of the GridGain. Presentation is split into approximately two equal
* In first part the formal introduction to GridGain and
computational grid computing is provided. Different types ofgrid computing will be briefly discussed as well as the key
features that GridGain provides
* In the second part the live coding example will be shown
.demonstrating building and running the grid application from
scratch in front of the audience. This demonstration will
highlight one of …

First trials with Hadoop

I followed the HadoopQuickstart guide and the whole process is described below.

This post can be used as a reference for other people installing Hadoop.

My system is OpenSuse 10.3 and Java version is 1.6.0_03.

After downloading and installing the package I did the Standalone operation test:

$ mkdir input
$ cp conf/*.xml input
$ bin/hadoop jar hadoop-*-examples.jar grep input output 'dfs[a-z.]+'
$ cat output/*

Here is the output (line feeds may be corrupted, sorry for that):

gtz2:/home/telzur/downloads/hadoop-0.14.4 # bin/hadoop jar hadoop-0.14.4-examples.jar grep input output 'dfs[a-z.]+'08/01/05 15:47:13 INFO jvm.JvmMetrics: Initializing JVM Metrics with processName=JobTracker, sessionId=08/01/05 15:47:13 INFO mapred.FileInputFormat: Total input paths to process : 308/01/05 15:47:13 INFO mapred.JobClient: Running job: job_local_108/01/05 15:47:13 INFO mapred.MapTask: numReduceTasks: 108/01/05 15:47:13 INFO mapred.LocalJobRunner: file:/home/telzur/downloads/…

Howto encrypt/decrypt a file using openssl

To encrypt:
# openssl bf -a -salt -in original_file.odt -out
you will be prompt to type and then re-type a password

here: bf - stands for the Blow Fish algorithm

To decrypt:
# openssl bf -d -salt -a -in ./ -out ./original_file.odt
use the same password when asked.

-d stands for decryption

For more information and examples type: man enc