Visualization Where You Need It

Tungsten Graphics, Obsidian and Cisco Demonstrate Real-World Visualization Solutions at SC|06

SC|06 — TAMPA, FL November 13, 2006 — At Supercomputing '06, the premiere conference for High Performance Computing, Tungsten Graphics, Obsidian Research and Cisco are showing attendees how they can create real-time, interactive visualization solutions across a campus or around the world — wherever the user needs it. This powerful capability allows a whole new level of collaboration and usage models for visualization solutions and is driven by Visualization servers and software from Tungsten Graphics clustered via Cisco InfiniBand switches and connected by Obsidian Longbow Campus range extenders that drive the visualization experience up to 10 km away from the cluster site without any performance loss.

Visualization users often have substantial data sets they need to interact with in real-time and require large, high-fidelity displays connected via a high-performance network to provide insight into the data. InfiniBand interconnect provides the necessary bandwidth and latency characteristics; however, until now, the distance limitations of this 10 Gb/s copper interconnect has made it difficult to truly unlock the full potential of visualization. "For compelling and useful visualization experiences, the user needs direct and easy access to visualization without being tethered to an equipment room, and the ability to share this access with other remote groups in real-time collaboration efforts," said Dr. David Southwell, CEO of Obsidian Research Corporation, "We are excited to be working with both Tungsten Graphics and Cisco on a complete visualization solution that realizes these benefits."

The Complete Visualization Solution
The complete visualization solution that demonstrates how to meet users' needs and maximize investments in visualization at minimal costs is driven by equipment from Tungsten, Cisco, and Obsidian.

The core of the real-world visualization solutions is the Tungsten Graphics TG-VizCluster — a high-performance, graphics-optimized visualization cluster built with commodity servers and enhanced Chromium software. With the included TG Render Server, users can visualize big data sets even on large display walls remote from central visualization resources. This allows for multiple displays, including the TG-View 7.5 Megapixel display system, to provide convenient front-ends to the TG-VizCluster.

Cisco SFS Switches and Host Channel Adapters (HCAs) provide the unprecedented bandwidth and superior latency characteristics of InfiniBand, ensuring the high frame rates necessary for the remote displays to provide an interactive visualization experience as well as the ability to scale the render cluster without performance compromises.

To provide the convenient front-end displays where they are needed with the performance equivalent to a locally-connected visualization solution, Obsidian Longbow products extend the InfiniBand range up to 10 km of dark fiber with Longbow Campus and across WAN links with Longbow XR. These products allow consolidated visualization cluster resources to be shared across an organization in real-time, promoting extended collaboration and increased efficiencies.

Come See Remote Visualization Solutions in Action at SC|06
"The real-world visualization demonstrations at SC|06 help attendees understand how to take the technology and apply it to their organization for real solutions that will enable the scientific breakthroughs that are the promise of visualization," said Amir Sharif, Product Manager, Server Virtualization Business Unit at Cisco.

The real-world visualization solutions being shown at SC|06 include:

  • A local TG-VizCluster driving visualization on a TG-View display system through Cisco InfiniBand hardware and a pair of Obsidian Longbow Campus devices over 2 km of fiber in Cisco's booth. (#1035).
  • The same local TG-VizCluster driving visualization on a TG-View display system in the UK e-sciences booth (#2234) over Cisco InfiniBand hardware and another pair of Obsidian Longbow campus devices.
  • Both TG-View displays (in Cisco booth #1035 and UK e-sciences booth #2234) accessing visualization from a 17-node TG-VizCluster located at CCLRC in the UK via a WAN connection.

About Tungsten Graphics:
Tungsten Graphics, the open source graphics experts, is the developer of the TG- VizCluster family of products that delivers turnkey cluster graphics systems based on commodity computing hardware and enhanced Chromium software. Our team of open source graphics experts puts us in a unique position to solve difficult and complex problems with straightforward solutions. Tungsten Graphics specializes in Linux and open-source graphics technologies including X-servers, OpenGL, the Direct Rendering Infrastructure, Mesa, VNC and Chromium. For more information, see

About Obsidian:
Obsidian Research Corporation and the Obsidian Longbow LP are the developers of Longbow, a series of InfiniBand range extension products. Longbow technology allows an InfiniBand fabric, normally a short-range network used in high-performance computing, to be extended via optical fiber over varying distances. Longbow connects across Campus, Metro or Global networks to offer unparallel high-bandwidth, low-latency access to InfiniBand compute and storage resources. Obsidian is available online at