The Hardware Architecture of the ICL GOLDRUSH MegaSERVER (1995)

Author(s): Watson P, Robinson EH

    Abstract: This paper describes the hardware architecture of the ICL GOLDRUSH MegaSERVER, a distributed store parallel machine designed to operate as an open database server. The system is sold by ICL to commercial customers who require a high performance, high availability platform to support their critical business applications. GOLDRUSH consists of up to 64 Elements, each of which can co-operate in database processing, exploiting both the parallelism found within complex queries and that found between queries in On-Line Transaction Processing workloads. The Elements are connected by a very high performance (1.2 GBytes/s) internal network. Each Element has local disks to store the database. Some Elements have external comms connections allowing clients to connect to the system and so send queries into it for processing. Large tape libraries can be connected to multiple Elements, so allowing databases to be archived (and restored) in parallel at high speeds. This paper discusses the architectural options for the design of high performance computers, explaining why the Distributed Store Architecture was chosen for Goldrush. It then describes the design of the key aspects of the system including the parallel Elements, the internal network and the cabinets.

      • Journal: Ingenuity: the ICL Technical Journal
      • Volume: 10
      • Issue: 2
      • Pages: 206-219
      • Publisher: International Computers Ltd.
      • Publication type: Article
      • Bibliographic status: Published

        Professor Paul Watson
        Professor of Computing Science