Oracle’s new cloud infrastructure roadmap is all about high-performance computing

Announcements include NVIDIA A100 general availability, Arm for Linux cloud instances, and a new tier of elastic computing.

Image: Oracle

Oracle announced its latest cloud services roadmap, which is focused on eliminating what Oracle VP of product Karan Batta called the “trade-offs, caveats, and gaps” in cloud high-performance computing (HPC).

To that end, Oracle’s HPC roadmap update consists of five announcements that Batta said “are designed to meet the high expectations our infrastructure customers, including for HPC solutions to deliver the best of both worlds: The absolute performance they expect from on-premises systems and the pay-per-use, flexibility, and scalability of cloud, all at a leading price point.” 

Intel Ice Lake HPC instances coming soon

Batta said that Oracle is working closely with Intel to improve its HPC offering, and in this case that means Intel Ice Lake processor instances are coming “early next year.” Ice Lake instances are reportedly able to handle crash simulations, computational fluid dynamics, and electronic design automation 30% faster than Oracle’s existing X7 HPC instances. 

Intel Ice Lake was announced in mid-2019 and is Intel’s first 10nm chipset.

NVIDIA A100 GPU instances now available

Starting on Sept. 30, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure customers in the US, Europe, Middle East, Africa, and the Japanese Pacific regions will be able to spin up NVIDIA A100 instances for $3.05 per GPU hour.

SEE: Top cloud providers in 2020: AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud, hybrid, SaaS players (TechRepublic)

A100 instances will be scalable to 512 GPUs in a single cluster made up of bare-metal nodes housing eight A100 GPUs. Each eight-GPU node is capable of up to 1.6Tb/s of bandwidth, and will be ideal for large-scale artificial intelligence workloads, real-time analytics, and other data-intensive tasks. 

Pre-built HPC apps coming from Rescale

Rescale, a HPC provider that offers pre-built high performance computing applications, has partnered with Oracle Cloud Infrastructure to make its more than 450 HPC applications available pre-installed in Oracle HPC instances. 

SEE: Software as a Service (SaaS): A cheat sheet (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

“Rescale takes the complexity out of high-performance computing in the cloud by providing an HPC platform that can be deployed in minutes,” said Rescale COO Terry Danzer.

Arm-based instances coming to Oracle Cloud

Oracle has partnered with Ampere to bring Arm-based instances to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. Available beginning early next year, Arm instances will be available as bare-metal instances and virtual machines running a “wide variety of Linux distros, including Oracle Linux and Ubuntu,” Batta said.

Arm instances will also be part of the Always Free Tier of service, and will be available to scale up to 160 cores with 3.3Ghz turbo frequency.

New E4 elastic computing instances coming

E3, Oracle’s first flexible infrastructure elastic computing product, was only announced in April 2020, but the company is already planning the next tier of its elastic service, E4.

Available early next year, E4 will be built on AMD’s next generation of CPU instances that “allow for greater performance at the same economics, making this service ideal for general-purpose workloads or custom applications,” Batta said.

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