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This section provides a selection of the most useful hardware resources for people working with CFD. To suggest a link to be included in this section please use the online link suggestion form. You are of course also welcome to contact us directly via email at

Remember that you can discuss CFD hardware and ask questions on the CFD Online Hardware Forum!



SPEC - Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation [GOOD]
The SPECfp benchmarks are reasonably relevant for CFD applications. You can find recent benchmark results for a wide range of hardware published on their web-site. Highly recommended!
ANSYS Fluent Benchmarks [GOOD]
A wide range of typical industrial CFD cases benchmarked on many different hardware platform with the Fluent solver. This is a very good and current resource. Highly recommended!
ANSYS CFX Benchmarks
A few benchmarks using CFX.
The Performance Database Server, netlib
A database with benchmark results. Has been online for a long time but it is not updated very frequently.
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News and Reviews

the Inquirer [GOOD]
Daily news from the PC industry. If you want to stay up do date with the developments in the PC industry this site is very useful - has many inside sources.
The Register
One of the largest news-sites in the PC industry. Updated all the time. The quality can be a bit varying but they never miss anything.
Publisher of leading magazines like PC Magazine, Computer Shopper, ... Has a very large and nice web site.
AnandTech [GOOD]
This amazing site, started in 1997 by a high-school student, has grown into one of the leading hardware review sites on the net.
X-bit Laboratories [GOOD]
A very good hardware review site originating from Russia.
Tom's Hardware Guide
Reviews of PC hardware. For a long time this was the leading independent hardware test site on the net. In recent years their quality has fallen a bit though and there are probably better places to look for reviews today.
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Hardware Vendors

Dell Computer Corporation
The leading vendor for Intel based hardware - usually good price, quality and support. Dell grew very quickly for many years but has stalled a bit lately.
HP Compaq
One of the leading workstation vendors. Sells workstations based on Intel processors and their own PA-RISC processors running HP-UX. HP has had strong position in the scientific computing area for a long time and merged with Compaq recently. Will migrate to IA-64 in the future.
Intel Corporation
Designs, manufactures and sells processors. PC's based on their IA-32 architecture and workstations based on their new IA-64 architecture seem to be the main future computing platforms - all workstation manufacturers are adopting the IA-64 platform. The only real competitor to Intel in the processor market is AMD.
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Cloud Computing Services

CFD Direct
Run OpenFOAM on Amazon Web Services (AWS) or Microsoft Azure clouds.
An on-demand HPC cloud service that offers access to codes like Fluent, CFX, StarCD, StarCCM+, OpenFOAM/Foam-Ext, Converge, Numeca Fine-Marine, FDS etc. Also pre-post tools like ANSA, Ensight, Paraview etc. and optimization codes (Heeds, CAESES…) are available.
Rescale, Inc.
A cloud HPC system with many commercial CFD codes available (Fluent, CFX, AVL Fire, Converge, Cradle, Numeca, Star-CCM+, ...)
Sabalcore Computing, Inc.
Provides on-demand remote computing services for computationally intensive applications like CFD. Works with open source, commercial software, or in-house CFD codes.
SimScale GmbH
Cloud-based CFD simulation platform. Possibility to run both OpenFOAM and SU2 directly from your web browser.
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For information on programming and parallel computing please see the Links > Programming and Computing > Parallel Computing section.
Lists the 500 most powerful computers in the world. Do not miss all the information you can find on this very good site. For example, you can view statistics [GOOD] on vendors, interconnects/networks, CPU's, operating systems, countries, .... This is the place to see who the big boys are and what they are using.
Wikipedia: High-performance computing, Comparison of cluster software, Computer cluster
A few examples of good pages about clusters on Wikipedia
Online Book: Engineering a Beowulf-style Compute Cluster
A very nice introduction to the art of building compute clusters. Written by Robert G. Brown.
Beowulf Cluster Design and Setup
Another very nice introduction to the art of building compute clusters. Written by Amit Jain.
Parallel CFD Test Solver
A simple parallel code which uses LAM/MPI. Suitable for cluster benchmarking. Free to download and use.

Cluster Management

Software collections and entire distributions aimed at cluster management. Some are free and some cost money.
OSCAR - Open Source Cluster Application Resources
A collection of open-source cluster tools. This is an attempt to standardize a whole suite of cluster tools. Looks very interesting.
A free distribution aimed at HPC clusters. Rocks and OSCAR are the two main players here as far a we are aware. We are not sure which one is best. Please give us your opinion if you try them!
Penguin Computing, Scyld Clusterware for HPC
Sells cluster management software focused on large cluster applications. Scyld was started by Donald J. Becker, one of the pioneers in Beowulf clusters. Scyld was later bought by Penguin Computing.
Platform Computing
Sells cluster management software.

Linux Distributions

Most clusters are buildt around Linux. Here are a few of the most popular distributions.
RedHat, Inc.
RedHat is the leading Linux distribution and it is the operating system most frequently used on clusters today.
A free version of RedHat Enterprise Linux. This is what runs on :-)
Scientific Linux
Another free distribution based on RedHat Enterpise. Focused on scientific computing and managed by Fermilab and CERN.
SuSE is the second largest Linux distribution. The free version is linked here, there is also an enterprise SuSE version that costs money. A nice alternative if you for some reason don't like RedHat.
A linux distribution based on Debian that has become popular over the last few years.

Cluster Vendors

A few selected cluster vendors. Most people build their clusters using hardware from normal hardware vendors, but here are a few examples of vendors focused on HPC cluster hardware.
Sells pre-configures beowulf clusters. Has an online cluster configurator which you can use to request a quote.
Penguin Computing
Has been selling pre-packaged clusters based on Linux for a long time. Has a good reputation.
Atipa Technologies
Sells linux clusters for high performance computing applications.
SGI used to be the leader in scientific computing and visualization hardware, but as Linux and Beofulf clusters together with very good PC based grapics from NVidia and AMD/ATI took away SGI's market they went belly up. However, in 2006 SGI re-emerged and for the moment SGI are doing well. SGI is now very focused on cluster computing and have bought several cluster vendors. They also recently bought OpenCFD, so you will probably soon be able to buy a pre-configured cluster from SGI with OpenFOAM pre-installed.
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General Purpose Grapics Processing Unit (GPGPU)

Information about using general purpose GPU's for CFD simulations. Please add information yourself if you miss something.
Wikipedia: GPGPU and GPU
Growing pages about GPU's at Wikipedia
NVIDIA Computational Fluid Dynamics
An interesting page about CFD simulations on NVIDIA GPU's.
Fluid Dynamics at is a portal dedicated to GPU computations. The site contains links to reviews, tutorials, research papers and program packages. Looks like a good place.
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TOP500 Supercomputer Sites
Lists the 500 most powerful computers in the world. Systems are ranked according to their Linpack benchmark results. This site has been online for a long time. Nice!
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