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Key Considerations in AI and HPC Infrastructure: Storage

May 11, 2022

Key Considerations in AI and HPC Infrastructure: Storage

Keep the following considerations in mind to ensure successful, efficient AI and HP infrastructure implementations that handle storage needs effectively.

Design to Scale

Large data sets are required to deliver accurate AI results. Having this data drives incredibly large storage demands and managing these data sets requires a system that can quickly scale without imitations. This often means lots of compute, but it also means being able to feed that compute. Traditional Network Attached Storage (NAS) is bandwidth-limited, so AI projects need to leverage an AI-first storage solution to effectively pull in data. Because the compute is so incredibly powerful, you need a storage solution that is purpose-built for AI training scenarios.

HPC-Focused Systems

High-performance computing has similar issues but can use traditional parallel file systems that are capable of large streaming data sets. While the two storage systems might end up looking similar physically, an HPC-focused system is more likely to use a Lustre solution, versus an AI system that might use an AI-specific storage solution such as that provided by Weka and an S3-compliant object storage tier.

Storage Tiering

Storage tiering is another area that companies need to consider, since it helps ensure minimized cost and maximized availability, performance, and recovery. However, not all storage tiering is equal. The key to tiering is to keep things as cost-effective as possible, spending your budget wisely without suffering a performance penalty.

An optimized AI infrastructure system will help make sure your project has enough space for hot data, balancing the rest with less expensive data storage to meet regulatory or persistence requirements as needed. To learn more, read this white paper about Silicon Mechanics Atlas AI Cluster and learn how AI clusters can be designed from the ground up to simplify future scaling.


About Silicon Mechanics

Silicon Mechanics, Inc. is one of the world’s largest private providers of high-performance computing (HPC), artificial intelligence (AI), and enterprise storage solutions. Since 2001, Silicon Mechanics’ clients have relied on its custom-tailored open-source systems and professional services expertise to overcome the world’s most complex computing challenges. With thousands of clients across the aerospace and defense, education/research, financial services, government, life sciences/healthcare, and oil and gas sectors, Silicon Mechanics solutions always come with “Expert Included” SM.

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