Thursday, December 24, 2009

Less is Less

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Canon Powershot S3 IS can work with 4GB SD card

I saw lots of traffic in the Internet dealing with the question if it possible to upgrade Canon PowerShot S3 IS memory card beyond 2GB.
I can report, from my personal experience, that this camera accepts and works well with SanDisk SDHC 4GB card. The exact product packing is shown in the photo below (which is in low quality because it was taken by my cellular phone :) )

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The next IGT HPC Work Group meeting

The next Israeli Association of Grid Technologies High-Performance Computing Work Group meeting

13:45-16:00, January 20, 2010 IGT Office Maskit 4 Hertzeliya


13:45-14:00 Opening by Avner Algom and Guy Tel-Zur

14:00-15:00 Prof. Tilo Wettig, Ph.D., University of Regensburg, Germany - The QPACE supercomputer (Live via Webex)

15:00-15:15 Coffee break

15:15-16:00 Dr. Guy Tel-Zur, IGT – Challenges in teaching Parallel Computing



Prof. Tilo Wettig, Ph.D., University of Regensburg, Germany - The QPACE supercomputer

Prof. Tilo Wettig will give an overview of the QPACE supercomputer, which was
developed by a collaboration of several academic institutions and the IBM R&D lab Boeblingen, Germany. QPACE is a massively parallel architecture, allowing a single application to run on thousands of nodes. Individual nodes consist of a PowerXCell 8i processor and an FPGA that functions as network coprocessor. The nodes are connected in a 3-dimensional torus. The target application is quantum chromodynamics (QCD, thus the name QPACE = QCD parallel computing on the Cell), but the machine is also suitable for other mesh-based applications. QPACE is currently #1 on the Green 500 list, i.e., it is the most power-efficient supercomputer in the world.

Dr. Guy Tel-Zur, IGT – Challenges in teaching Parallel Computing

We are now in the Multi-Core era; however there are not enough graduates from Computer Science and Computer Engineering departments who luck an elementary knowledge in Parallel Computing.

The talk will cover challenges in teaching an introductory course to Parallel Computing.

Such a course is given by the speaker at the Ben-Gurion University in Beer-Sheva to Electrical and Computer Engineering students. The Syllabus and the infrastructure for teaching this course will be described and a few demos will be presented.

To reserve your place, please send your details to:

Date Dec 9, 2009 13:45 16:00
Location IGT Offices

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Parallel Computing on Windows

There are many ways to use MPI. In this post I show how to install and use the DeinoMPI implementation which looks very cool and is free.
The screen captures in this post were taken using the nice SnapIt tool.

Part 1: Installing DeinoMPI

After downloading and starting the msi file:

Part 2: Configuring DeinoMPI
2.1 Start the deinoMPI daemon:

2.2 Credentials

Part 3: Testing
In this part I show how to compile a MPI program with the free Bloodshed DevC++ IDE.
I use the famous cpi.c code

This installation is "Local Only" (perhaps in one of my future posts I will show how to use this tool with more than one node):

The Windows Firewall is noticing the new player:

Here is the execution and output window:

It is nice to see the Task Manager showing the 10 parallel running processes:

Part 4: A little-bit Mathematics

The integration in cpi.c is done for f(x)=1/(1+x**2) between 0 to 1.
It is nice to replace this function by f(x)=sqrt(1-x**2) also between 0 to 1 (the unit circle).
Strangely enough, integration of either of these functions between 0 to 1 is equal to Pi/4.
The Sage Symbolic Mathematics tool is a good way to show the difference between the two functions:

Sunday, October 25, 2009

[mpich-discuss] Errors while testing MPICH2 on Vista

[mpich-discuss] Errors while testing MPICH2 on Vista

Guy Tel-Zur gtelzur at
Sat Oct 24 14:39:26 CDT 2009
I am trying to test a fresh installation of MPICH2 (version 1.2) on Vista32
and get the following errors:

c:\temp>"c:\Program Files\MPICH2\bin\mpiexec.exe" -n 4 cpi.exe
Please specify an authentication passphrase for smpd: <*I type here the
passphrase, e.g. behappy*>
Error while connecting to host, No connection could be made because the
target machine actively refused it. (10061)
Connect on sock (host=user-PC, port=8676) failed, exhaused all end points
Unable to connect to 'user-PC:8676',
sock error: Error = -1

I will appreciate any comment.

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Friday, October 16, 2009

IGT HPC WG Meeting

The next IGT HPC Work Group meeting

14:00-16:30, November 4th , 2009 IGT Office Maskit 4 Hertzeliya


14:00-14:15 Welcome talk Avner and Guy

14:15-15:15 Mr. Lior Amar and Mr. Tal Maoz – Clusterlogic: CLiP & Infod -- HPC Cluster Management and Monitoring

15:15-15:30 Coffee break

15:30-16:30 Mr. Nadav Rotem, Haifa University - Introduction to Reconfigurable Computing



CLiP & Infod -- HPC Cluster Management and Monitoring
Mr. Lior Amar and Mr. Tal Maoz
ClusterLogic (
) specializes in providing advanced solutions for HPC Linux clusters. In this talk we will present two of our products, aimed at making the task of cluster management and monitoring easier:

CLiP is a Cluster Installation and Management system which enables the rapid installation of diskless (and diskfull) clients. It is very flexible and enables the administrator to setup multiple desired configuration with only a few clicks.
The client nodes boot using the desired configuration and in a few minutes the cluster is ready for use.

In this talk we will perform a live demonstration of CLiP.


Infod is a gossip based information dissemination system, designed to give a robust cluster-wide information exchange platform. Nodes running this system routinely exchange information with other (randomly selected) nodes in the cluster. The outcome is that each node maintains a partial (or full) view of the cluster. This view can be used for
load balancing or monitoring and is constantly updated.

In the talk we will present the concepts behind the system and a live demonstration of the system will be performed.

Introduction to Reconfigurable Computing

Mr. Nadav Rotem, Haifa University


Reconfigurable computing is a paradigm which combines the flexibility of software with the high performance of hardware. Recently we see more and more FPGAs in High Performance Computing. Problems which were previously solved by either software or custom hardware machines are now done by hybrid reconfigurable systems. In this talk I will introduce FPGAs, present their architecture, their programming tools and design process. I will present commercial hybrid systems which combine reconfigurable components with traditional clusters. I will present High-Level Synthesis, which is a method for programming reconfigurable devices using high languages such as C. I will present several reconfigurable applications and compare their performance with traditional cluster implementations.

To reserve your place, please send your details to:

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Schrödinger's cat - 2009 Edition

What are the chances that you will be found alive if you entered an Israeli train?
Well, according to the recent Israeli trains accidents it is not high.
Here are photos I took today of the train that went off the tracks near Kfar Menachem:

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Cloud-based Services and Applications

Cloud-based Services and Applications

Prof Mark Baker, University of Reading
Dr. Marcel Kunze, Forschungszentrum, Karlsruhe


Cloud computing is increasingly being used for what was known as “on-demand” and “utility computing”. The services provided, the APIs and the applications that can be hosted by these Cloud providers have superseded the use of the grid, and are increasingly becoming popular with users. There are obviously two sides to the services that are provided by Cloud providers: those that are supplied by commercial entities, such as Amazon and Google, as well as those that are open-source systems, such as provided by OpenCirrus and Eucalyptus.

In this workshop we wish to examine and explore the services, interfaces and types of applications that can be executed on Cloud systems. In addition, we are interested in the interfaces used to access the underlying services, the pros/cons of using virtualisation, the range and scope of applications that can be executed, the security used by these services, and aspects such a service level agreements and quality of service provided.

Topics areas of interest:

  • Security Policies and Mechanisms,
  • Possession and ownership of data,
  • Scheduling on Clouds,
  • Cloud benchmarks
  • Cloud-based services and protocols,
  • Cloud Interoperability,
  • Storage and file systems,
  • Cloud scalability and performance,
  • Fault-tolerance,
  • Application development and debugging tools.
  • Business models and economics of cloud services
  • Vituralization of hardware and software resources,
  • Performance monitoring and prediction of cloud performance,
  • Capacity planning and resource allocation,
  • Service Level Agreements and Quality of Services,
  • Cloud architecture.

The format of submitted papers should follow the guidelines for IEEE conference proceedings format (8.5" x 11", Two-Column). Paper should be submitted in PDF format to the IEEE e-Science conference submission system.
The proceedings of this workshop will be published by IEEE Computer Society Press.
Submitting a paper to the workshop means that if the paper is accepted, at least one author should attend the workshop to present the paper.
Submission Deadlines:
Short contributions (up to four pages), which may state a position or describe a development or research outcome are invited, using the normal IEEE paper formatting guidelines.
First drafts: 25th September 2009
Notification of acceptance: 2nd October 2009
Final papers due: October 14th 2009.
All papers should be sent to Prof Mark A. Baker (

Programme Committee:
Mark Baker, SSE, University of Reading

Marcel.Kunze, Forschungszentrum, University of Karlsruhe

Lee Gillam, Department of Computing, University of Surry

Nikolaos Antonopoulos, School of Computing University of Derby

Matthew Dovey, JISC

Garry Smith, SSE, University of Reading

Dan Katz, Computation Institute (CI), University of Chicago

Guy Tel-Zur, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev

David Abramson, Faculty of Information Technology, Monash University,
Jeremy Cohen, Imperial College
Terance Harmer, The Queen's University of Belfast


IGT GPGPU Meeting - Performance Primitives on the GPU

Mordechai Butrashvily
Company for Advanced Supercomputing Solutions Ltd.


This meeting will showcase NVIDIA library implementing various performance primitives on the GPU for various purposes, from image/video processing to other tasks.

The library can be considered as the GPU equivalent of Intel IPP, although with functionality that is added with time.

In the meeting we will overview the set of supported functions, test and discuss performance topics with regard to the GPU.

Using this library, users can experience between x10 to x50 performance increases when compared to running on the CPU.

This meeting will be followed by another, discussing upcoming LAPACK library implementation on the GPU.

To reserve your place, please send your contact details to:

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Condor at the IGT

Miron Livny talking at the IGT event, July 15th, 2009.

The presentation of Dhruba Borthakur about Hadoop and Condor is available here.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Art Fair on the Square

I enjoyed visiting today at Madison's Art Fair on the Square.
You can see some photos I took in my Picasa album here.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

IGT Event: HPC Workgroup Meeting at Voltaire

Date: Jul 23, 2009 09:30 12:30
Location: Voltaire, 13 Zarchin St. Raanana


Assaf Somekh
VP Marketing & Strategic Alliances
"New products and developments"

Tom Thirer

Fabric Management product manager will present
"UFM: How to optimize performance with less operational efforts"

Amit Katz

Ethernet Platform product manager

"10GbE in the HPC Market”

Assaf Wachtel

InfiniBand Platform product manager will present

"40 Gb/s InfiniBand Switching Portfolio"

Amit Katz

Ethernet Platform product manager

Accelerating Open MPI with InfiniBand or 10GbE

To reserve your place, please send your contact details to:

Date Jul 23, 2009 09:30 12:30
Location Voltaire, 13 Zarchin St. Raanana

IGT Event: Condor and the Cloud with Prof. Miron Livny & a Facebook IT Case Study

Prof. Miron Livny
The Head of the Condor project: Open Source for High Throughput Computing (HTC)

Condor and the Cloud - The Challenges and the Roadmap of Condor
The goal of the Condor® Project is to develop, implement, deploy, and evaluate mechanisms and policies that support High Throughput Computing (HTC) on large collections of distributively owned computing resources.
Today, Condor is being used as a service in private clouds, Amazon EC2 and is embedded in Redhat Linux.

Dhruba Borthakur
Software Engineer at Facebook and Project Lead for Apache Hadoop File System

Hadoop Distributed File System (including Hive) & Condor
I discuss the design and architecture of the Hadoop Distributed File system.
I then talk about configuration details about the private Hadoop Cloud used by Facebook to process petabytes of data.

Date: July 15th, 2009 14:30-17:00

Location: Microsoft R&D Center, Hertzelia

To reserve your place, please send your contact details to:

Date Jul 15, 2009 14:30 17:00
Location Microsoft R&D Center, Shenkar 13 St. Gav-Yam Building No 5, Hertzelia

Monday, May 25, 2009

MPI.NET Tutorial

In this post I will show step by step how to install and execute MPI (Message Passing Interface) parallel programs in the .NET environment.
A much more detailed tutorial is available here.

1) Installation:
My computer is running Windows Vista and Visual Studio 2008 is already installed.
Download and install the HPC Pack 2008 (next 5 figures):

Then install the MPI.NET SDK.msi (see next 4 figures):

2) Test the installation from the command line (next 3 figures):

A "Ping-Pong" program

Serial run:

As should be, the firewall detects the communication traffic and the user should allow it:

Parallel run:

3) MPI "Hello" demo using Visual Studio 2008 and C# (next 5 figures):

Start a new console C# project:

Add Reference to the MPI component:

Build the executable:

Execute the parallel program with 8 threads:

Verifying the execution of the 8 threads by looking at the Task Manager:

That's all for now.
Your comments are welcome.

Guy Tel-Zur

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Wolfram Alpha vs. Google - Round 1

I asked the two search engines about Quantum Gravity, see for yourself the results...

Multiplying the Power of Mathematica 7 Over the GRID

The IGT, Engineering Software Lab and Wolfram Research are happy to invite you to this interesting Mini Seminar on the subject of:

Multiplying the Power of Mathematica 7 over the GRID

(Plus an introduction to the new computational knowledge search engine Wolfram Alpha )

About the Speaker:

Jon McLoone has worked with Wolfram Research, makers of Mathematica, since 1992 on software development, system design, technical writing, and strategy. He supports educational projects in cooperation with universities and government research, and has lectured on Mathematica around the world. McLoone has a degree in mathematics from Durham University, United Kingdom.

A Video recording of a lecture on Mathematica Lightweight Grid systems by Jon can be viewed here:

Using the Wolfram Lightweight Grid System

The Seminar:

Part 1

Multiplying the Power of Mathematica 7 over the GRID:

An introduction to Grid Computing parallel computing and HPC with Mathematica 7 and gridMathematica

The presentation will discuss some of the HPC technologies built in to Mathematica, including optimized data types and algorithms, and will explain Mathematica's parallel programming architecture and scalable, parallel deployment options as well as demonstration of grid capabilities in gridMathematica and Mathematica 7 including live demonstration.

45 minutes, + question/ answer

Part 2

Wolfram Alpha

An introduction to the new computational knowledge search engine Wolfram Alpha

An introduction and discussion on using GRID computing in search engines.

45 minutes, + question/ answer

Date Jun 4, 2009 15:00 17:00
Location IGT

Friday, April 24, 2009

Grids, Clouds and Physics

Remember the Canonical Commutation Relation (Commutator) from Physics courses?

Let's implement it on our two favorite terms:

[Grids, Clouds] = Grids*Clouds-Clouds*Grids ≠ 0

This means that we can build Grids of Clouds and we can build Clouds of Grids and the final outcome will be different….
…So Distributed Computing exhibits Quantum and not Classical behavior :)

In the near future we will see Clouds connected into a Grid and Grids that are implemented on top of a Cloud.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

The race for new buzz words - GaaS

Following OnLive at GDC and others I would like to suggest the term GaaS to stand for Game as a Service. GaaS represents streaming games services that are delivered to end-users (with thin clients) by a Cloud Computing infastructure. Charging can be done according to a Pay-Per-Use model.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

IGT Cloud Investment Summit

Israeli association for Grid Technologies (IGT)

Cloud Investment Summit
for Virtualization and Cloud/SaaS Based startups

June 1st, 2009
Tel Aviv , Israel

Innovate Faster with Cloud Computing
Thanks to Cloud computing, the time it takes to bring a new product idea to market is shorter than ever before. Cloud computing helps startups to reduce the time and the cost to set-up and run R&D infrastructures. The immediate availability of unlimited computer resources expands the industry scope of R&D capabilities and improving the productivity and the profitability of the industry.

Call for Startups
Do you want to present your start-up to investors and CIOs?
For 5 minutes the floor could be all yours. Impress the press, wow your audience and secure your investment! We want the best startups, so if you're working on something spectacular in the Cloud, Grid, Virtualization or SaaS, the floor can be yours.

The event details and registration:

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Another Google failure...this time the Calendar

After Gmail failure a few days ago, this is a red light warning to the Cloud Computing model that this technology is still not mature enough.

Monday, February 09, 2009

IGT HPC Work Group Meeting - Intel TBB, Exanet

Monday, March 23rd, 2009

IGT Offices, Maskit 4, 5th Floor, Hertzliya.

14:00-14:15: Gathering

14:15-14:30: Opening - Avner & Guy

14:30-15:25: Introduction to Intel Threading Tools

15:25-15:35: Coffee Break

15:35-16:25: ExaStore® Clustered NAS System

16:25-16:35: Discussion and concluding remarks

Detailed Agenda:

14:30-15:25: Introduction to Intel Threading Tools

Speaker: Dr. Ami Marowka, Department of Computer Science

Bar-Ilan University


Intel Threading tools, Thread Profiler and Thread Checker, allow performing correctness and performance checking on multi-threaded applications running on multicore systems. The parallelization method may be based on POSIX, Windows Threads, or on OpenMP.

Thread Profiler is the tool which identifies bottlenecks that limit the parallel performance of your multi-threaded application, locates synchronization delays, stalled threads, excessive blocking time, and ineffective utilization of processors. It helps to find the best sections of code to optimize for sequential performance and for threaded performance, and compares scalability across different numbers of processors or using different threading methods.

Thread Checker is the tool which identifies and locates threading issues. Very often, concurrency problems (data races and deadlocks) are overlooked by the user during the parallelization process. This tool reliably identifies all problems of this kind; under the right conditions it is also possible to specify the exact location in the source code where things go wrong.

The talk is a pure live technology demonstration.

15:25-15:35: Coffee Break

15:35-16:25: ExaStore® Clustered NAS System

Speaker: Mr. Gregory Gurevich – Technical Director, Exanet LTD.


Scalable performance with clustered storage solution for traditional HPC and next-generation enterprise grids
The computing world is facing a major transformation – from old client/server architectures to virtualized global data centers. This change brings classic storage solutions to their limits with hardware and software bottlenecks.
Exanet offers an open storage architecture that combines the latest hardware innovations available in the market and the most efficient network storage software. Unlike other grid storage solutions, Exanet is based on a distributed file system, enabling both scalability and unlimited capacity. In addition, it provides advanced data management functionality that historically was unavailable in clustered storage

16:25-16:35: Discussion and concluding remarks

To register, please send your contact details to

We are looking forward to seeing you!

Best Regards,

Guy Tel-Zur, Ph.D.

IGT Chairman

Monday, February 02, 2009

IGT HPC Work Group Meeting - Maplesoft Parallel and Grid Computing Toolbox

Maple Workshop - Grid Computing Toolbox

Monday, February 23rd, 2009 14:00 - 17:00
IGT Offices, Maskit 4, 5th Floor, Hertzliya.

14:15-14:30: Opening - Avner & Guy

14:30-15:45: Maple – Part 1, Introduction to Maple

15:45-16:00: Coffee Break

16:00-17:00: Maple – Part 2, Maplesoft Parallel and Grid Computing Toolbox

Detailed Agenda:

14:30-15:45: Maple – Part 1: Introduction to Maple

Speaker: Omer Yagel, DigiSec LTD


  • An Introduction to Maple 12 lecture
  • Q&A

Lecture's Content

  • Easy start
    • The document interface principles
    • A brief on clickable math
    • Efficient use of the help
    • The Maple philosophy for efficient use
  • Symbolism
    • ODEs
    • Integrals
    • Matrices
    • Naming the many other areas I have no time to show (graph theory, tensor calc...)
  • Numerics
    • Precision
    • ODEs
    • Matrices
    • Internal NAG routines
  • Graphics
    • Simple 2D
    • Simple 3D
    • Animation, 2D and 3D
  • Writing Maple worksheet
    • Components
    • Plots and animation in components
  • Simulation
    • A word about the existence of MapleSim

15:45-16:00 Coffee Break

16:00-17:00: Maple – Part 2, Maplesoft Parallel and Grid Computing Toolbox

(Live via WebEx)


o Bill Huiskamp - Software Architect in the Research and Development Section at the Core Technologies Group, Maplesoft Inc., Waterloo, Canada

o Ted Shapiro - International Sales Channel Manager
Maplesoft Inc., Waterloo, Canada

Lecture's Content


Overview of Parallel Programming in Maple
- Threads
- Tasks

Parallel Example

Overview of Maple's Grid Toolbox
- Architecture
- Underlying technologies
- Programming model

Grid Programming
- Server
- Client
- General

Grid Example





To register, please send your contact details to

We are looking forward to seeing you!

Best Regards,

Guy Tel-Zur, Ph.D.

IGT Chairman

Date Feb 23, 2009 14:00 17:00

Location IGT Office, Maskit 4, 5th Floor, Hertzelia

Organizer IGT

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Amazon Web Services Meetup Tel Aviv

I enjoyed attending the event which took place today at Tel Aviv University. It was encouraging to see the Bar-Shira Auditorium full of young people interested in Web Services and Cloud Computing.

Enclosed 2 photos of Martin Buhr who gave a clear and interesting presentation about AWS.



Monday, January 19, 2009

IGT GPGPU/HPC joint WG Meeting - HMPP Workbench Demonstration

Date Jan 21, 2009 15:00 17:00

Location IGT Offices, Maskit 4, 5th Floor, Hertzelia


Mr. Stephane Bihan, CAPS Enterprises


Programming for the GPU architecture and multi-core platforms can be a difficult task. Sometimes it prevents from good utilization of the platform and even programmers entering this field.

For the aid of programmers, automatic tools can simplify most of the work: providing vectorization, parallelism and better register usage of the output.

HMPP Workbench is a framework developed by CAPS Enterprises to help programmers make effective use of multi-core architectures, including the CPU, GPU and other accelerators (FPGA, etc.).

HMPP provides compiler support for both C and FORTRAN environments.

The meeting will present the features of HMPP, including a live demonstration of porting an algorithm to multi-core and GPU environments.

To reserve your place, please email your details to:

Thank you,


For further reading check this: HPCWire

Sunday, January 11, 2009

First impression of Windows-7 beta

I installed Windows-7 beta as a guest operating system of the SUN xVM on my Lenovo T-61 running Vista . The installation went smoothly although it required most of the available memory. A screen shot is enclosed.


From reasons which I still don’t understand the network interface was not detected, so surfing the Internet was not possible during this test! (I have network connection when I run Suse 11 as a xVM client).

While everyone look to the sky these days for Cloud Computing, Microsoft preferred to dive into the sea and to display a fish at the center of the desktop. Strange.

I can’t say anything yet about stability and performance but my first impression is of a deja vu; More of the Same.

Suse and Ubuntu are still my favorites.

We shall see.

(This post was written using Windows Live Writer)