September 04, 2013
Building big supercomputers is challenging to be sure, but tapping their full potential has proven to be an even greater hurdle. And the higher that machine performance has soared, the harder it is to develop applications and other software to transform hardware into a meaningful resource.
In this fast-moving field, certain HPC software projects manage to both stand out and stand the test of time, and that's the case with ADIOS (the ADaptable I/O file System), an open-source middleware developed in a multi-institution collaboration between Oak Ridge National Laboratory ORNL, Georgia Institute of Technology, Rutgers University, and North Carolina State University. The primary aim of ADIOS is facilitating "big data" challenges by making it easier to get information in and out of a supercomputer.
Led by Scott Klasky from Oak Ridge Leadership Facility, the ADIOS development team received an R&D 100 Award for the project.
"ADIOS significantly reduces the input and output complexities encountered by scientists running on high-performance computers," noted the official announcement. By reducing the time to achieve solutions, the middleware allows researchers to devote more time to pursuing scientific insight and less time managing data.
As a platform for scalable data processing, ADIOS is well positioned to handle the coming exascale data challenges. "ADIOS represents a grassroots effort to allow data–intensive computations and experiments to scale to current and future-generation computing resources," said Klasky. "This award is the result of years of hard work from our team members and belief from our sponsors."
OLCF may be known for its mega-computing resources, but the center also pursues groundbreaking research that benefits the entire HPC community. First released in 2008, ADIOS now supports numerous applications on the Oak Ridge Titan supercomputer. The tool has a good track record of I/O performance results on the world's fastest machines and clusters, demonstrating up to a thousand-fold improvement over other common parallel file formats.
The most recent update, ADIOS version 1.5.0, was released in June and is available for download here.
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