Open source in Microsoft?

Redmond has been working with Argonne National Library, a Dept. of Energy lab operated by the University of Chicago, on an open source specification for message passing.

Microsoft is for the first time including open source technology is a product. The software giant worked with the Argonne National Laboratory, a Dept. of Energy lab operated by the University of Chicago, on its MPICH2 reference implementation, which most ISVs have tested their code against. Microsoft has optimized it for performance and security.

Microsoft plans to include the Message Passing Interface—a library specification for message passing proposed as a standard by a broad-based committee of vendors, implementers and users—in its Windows Server 2003 Compute Cluster Edition, which went to public beta this week at the Microsoft Developers Conference here and is on track to ship in the first half of next year.

"MPI is key middleware that was designed by a consortia of all the supercomputing vendors in the 1990s to allow the easy portability of code. It abstracts away things like low-latency interconnect, and our focus is making it super easy for ISVs to move their code," Kyril Faenov, Microsoft's director for High Performance Computing, told eWEEK in a recent interview at Microsoft's campus in Redmond, Wash.

"Actually, we are probably the first team at Microsoft that will actually ship an open-source component inside of our solution, but we haven't made a lot of noise around this yet," he said.

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