Penguin Computing

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Penguin Computing
FounderSam Ockman
United States
Area served
North America
OwnerSMART Global Holdings
Number of employees
100–200 Edit this at Wikidata

Penguin Computing is an American private supplier of enterprise, artificial intelligence (AI), high-performance computing (HPC), software-defined storage, and cloud computing solutions[buzzword] in North America and is based in Fremont, California.

The company's products include servers, computer clusters, networking components, digital storage, software solutions[buzzword] and a HPC cloud. Penguin Computing started as a Linux server company and now works on the design, engineering, integration, and delivery of solutions that are based on open architectures and non-proprietary components from a variety of Original equipment manufacturer (OEM) providers. Penguin Computing was an early contributor to the Open Compute Project (OCP).

High performance clusters[edit]

Penguin Computing operated as a Linux server company until it acquired in 2003 Scyld Software, a leader in Beowulf cluster management software.[1] Penguin Computing is based in Fremont, California.[2] The company's early software solutions[buzzword] were offered under its Scyld brand and included Scyld ClusterWare for cluster provisioning and management, as well as the Scyld Cloud Manager for cloud-enabled HPC environments.

In 2015, Penguin Computing was awarded a contract with the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) tri-laboratory Commodity Technology Systems program, or CTS-1.[3] Under the $39 million contract, Penguin Computing provided over 7 petaFLOPS of computing power at Los Alamos National Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratories, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Coincident with this contract win, Penguin Computing built up a division to focus specifically on the federal HPC market.[4]

The CTS-1 contract was one of the first and largest deployments of Intel's Omni-Path high-performance communications architecture.[5] This resulted in Penguin Computing being awarded with Intel's "Partner of the Year - HPC Technical Computing" award.[6]

Open Compute Project (OCP)[edit]

Penguin Computing was an early contributor to the Open Compute Project (OCP), is a member of the project foundation, and one of a limited number of authorized OCP providers.[7] In November 2015 Penguin Computing announced the developed of its Tundra Extreme Scale (Tundra ES) product line with the intention of applying the findings of the OCP to high performance computing.[8] In 2020, Penguin Computing announced the new Tundra AP line of servers, which support Intel Server System compute modules in an OCP form factor.

HPC cloud computing[edit]

In 2009 Penguin Computing launched Penguin Computing On-Demand (POD) which offers high performance computing (HPC) cloud computing. The POD cloud was one of the first remote HPC services offered on a pay-as-you-go monthly basis. Like its high performance clusters, the POD cloud is a bare-metal compute model to execute code, but each user is given virtualized login node. Penguin Computing offers users more than 150 pre-installed commercial and open source applications. POD computing nodes are connected via nonvirtualized 10 Gbit/s Ethernet or QDR InfiniBand networks. The POD Cloud data center has redundant Internet links and user connectivity ranging from 50 Mbit/s to 1 Gbit/s.[9]

At POD's launch Penguin Computing's CEO Charles Wuischpard contended that because of the performance overhead from virtualization, other clouds were not suited to HPC and that the computing nodes allocated to customers may be far apart, causing latency that impairs performance for some HPC programs.[10]

SMART division[edit]

In 2018 Penguin Computing was bought by the publicly traded SMART Global Holdings for a $60 million purchase price, with a further $25 million due if Penguin Computing hits certain profit milestones. The $60 million included the assumption of Penguin Computing’s debts, the company has borrowed $33 million from Wells Fargo to fund a new manufacturing facility. In the first quarter of financial year 2018 Penguin Computing had a gross profits of $10.3 million on sales of $48.5 million. HPC computer clusters were the main source of revenue. Penguin owned 1.2 percent of the HPC server market and when the company was bought by SMART it had ten supercomputers in the TOP500.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Linux Server Company Penguin Computing to Acquire Scyld Computing, the Leading Developer of Beowulf High-Performance Clustering Software". Business Wire. 10 June 2003. Retrieved 3 June 2016.
  2. ^ Hemsoth, Nicole (1 December 2015). "Penguin Charts Fresh Trajectory for Open Hardware". Signal Peak Ventures. Archived from the original on 30 June 2016. Retrieved 3 June 2016.
  3. ^ "NNSA Announces Procurement of Penguin Computing Clusters to Support Stockpile Stewardship at National Labs". NNSA Press Releases. National Nuclear Security Administration. 20 October 2015. Retrieved 16 May 2016.
  4. ^ Trader, Tiffany (6 January 2016). "Penguin Computing Mines Commodity Gold". HPC Wire. Retrieved 6 June 2016.
  5. ^ "Intel® Omni Path Architecture Makes Serious Headway". Top500 The List. 29 March 2016. Archived from the original on 13 June 2016. Retrieved 6 June 2016.
  6. ^ Bergman, Phillip (31 March 2016). "Penguin Computing Receives Partner of the Year - HPC Technical Computing Award at Intel Solutions Summit". PRWEB. Retrieved 3 June 2016.
  7. ^ Brueckner, Rich (2 January 2016). "Penguin Computing is now Platinum Member of Open Compute Project (OCP)". Inside HPC. Retrieved 2 June 2016.
  8. ^ "Penguin Computing's Tundra Extreme Scale Series Implements Solution Targeted for OCP-Compliant High Performance Computing Emerson Network Power's DC Power System". HPC Today. 16 November 2015. Retrieved 2 June 2016.
  9. ^ Eadline, Douglas. "Moving HPC to the Cloud". Admin Magazine. Admin Magazine. Retrieved 30 March 2019.
  10. ^ Niccolai, James (11 August 2009). "Penguin Puts High-performance Computing in the Cloud". PCWorld. IDG Consumer & SMB. Retrieved 6 June 2016.
  11. ^ Michael Feldman (12 June 2018). "Penguin Computing Acquired by SMART Global Holding". Retrieved 30 March 2019.