In November 2018, Amazon Web Services (AWS) announed Elastic Fabric Adapter, a network interface for HPC applications running on EC2. We previewed the EFA technology, running benchmark CFD simulations with OpenFOAM, presented previously: (1) strong scaling – 97 m total cells, external aerodynamics around a car; (2) weak scaling – 100 k cells per core, flow over a weir. At 1008 cores, EFA delivered linear scaling in the strong scaling test and ~70% scaling in the weak scaling test. With linear strong scaling, EFA enables faster solutions for the same cost simply by running on more cores. The combination of open source software, C5n instances and EFA provides impressive HPC, at a price accessible to all.
CFD Direct From the Cloud™ (CFDDFC) is a Marketplace Product for AWS EC2, that provides a complete platform with OpenFOAM and supporting software running on Ubuntu Linux. It enables simple, fast creation of a cluster of instances to run CFD with OpenFOAM. We tested Amazon EC2 C5n instances, launched in November 2018, on 2 cases of steady-state, external aerodynamics around a car and transient simulation of water flowing over a weir. With meshes of 50-100 million cells, results showed 70%-90% scaling at 504 cores. The cost of the simulations was in the order of $100, compared to $100,000+ to purchase on-premises hardware and licences of proprietary software.
CFD Direct From the Cloud (CFDDFC) is our established platform for running OpenFOAM, ParaView and supporting software using cloud computing. CFDDFC is now available on AWS C5 and M5 instances of Elastic Cloud Compute (EC2). The CFDDFC product page on AWS MarketPlace now lists CFDDFC versions 5.2 and 4.2, corresponding to versions 5 and 4 of OpenFOAM, respectively. Users who launch CFDDFC with the command line interface should update their installation of CFDDFC immediately.
CFD Direct announces the release of their new 1 day Cloud CFD course, the fourth course in their portfolio of OpenFOAM Training. The course enables users to run CFD with OpenFOAM on AWS, training the tools and processes for inexpensive, secure, efficient cloud use. The course addresses the main concerns of using public cloud: cost management, security, efficient CFD and data management. It exploits the cost benefits of cloud: meeting fluctuating demand for hardware at a cost that represents consistent, high utilitisation; and using cheaper, spare capacity, with an application that does not require 100% availability.
CFD Direct From the Cloud (CFDDFC) is our established platform for running OpenFOAM, ParaView and supporting software using cloud computing. We are pleased to announce the release of our CFDDFC command line interface (CLI) for quick, simple, deployment of OpenFOAM CFD workloads with CFDDFC on Amazon EC2. The CLI is a simple shell script named “cfddfc” that users can follow a few short short steps to get running. It uses EC2 Spot Instances by default, and provides cost estimates for data transfer to help users run workloads at lowest cost.
In Year 2, CFD Direct updated its OpenFOAM cloud computing platform — CFD Direct From the Cloud (CFDDFC) — to OpenFOAM 4.1, running on Ubuntu 16.04. Feedback from users was very positive, including a 5-star rating on the CFDDFC Marketplace Product page at at Amazon Web Services (AWS). We became an Advanced Technology Partner of AWS, and produced a case study on the cost of CFD on AWS EC2 that concluded, in particular, that the cost of Spot instances was approximately 40% of the total cost of ownership of on-premises hardware. We made CFDDFC available on AWS X1 instance types, running simulations on 32 and 64 physical cores in a single instance.