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Things to Know About the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler

Updated: April 17, 2013

This topic contains additional information and known issues about the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler.

Supported HPC plug-ins

The Windows Azure HPC Scheduler supports the HPC plug-ins that are listed in the following table. You import the plug-ins through the ServiceDefinition.csdef file for your Windows Azure deployment. For more information, see Overview of the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler.

 

Plug-in Supported Windows Azure roles Functionality

HpcHeadNode

Worker role

By default, this plug-in enables the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler for job scheduling and the node manager for resource management.

Optionally, this plug-in supports additional functionality. You can enable the SOA session manager to manage sessions and the SOA broker to manage messages between the SOA client and the service hosts.

HpcComputeNode

Worker role

By default, this plug-in enables the node manager to coordinate resource management.

HpcBrokerNode

Worker role

By default, this plug-in enables the SOA broker to manage messages between the SOA client and the service hosts and the node manager to coordinate resource management.

HpcVmNode

VM role (beta)

ImportantImportant
Support for the HpVmNode plug-in in the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler is deprecated. The VM Role feature (beta) of Windows Azure is being retired on May 15, 2013.

noteNote
The Windows Azure HPC Scheduler does not support persistent Windows Azure virtual machines.

By default, this plug-in enables the node manager to coordinate resource management.

HpcWebFrontEnd

Web role

By default, this plug-in enables the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler Portal and an HTTP web service (based on the REST model) to provide job submission interfaces to the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler.

HpcWebFrontEndHeadNode

Worker or web role

By default, this plug-in enables the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler for job scheduling, the node manager for resource management, and the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler Portal and an HTTP web service (based on the REST model) to provide job submission interfaces to the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler.

noteNote
The Windows Azure HPC Scheduler Portal is only supported if this plug-in is added to a web role.

Optionally, this plug-in supports additional functionality. You can enable the SOA session manager to manage sessions and the SOA broker to manage messages between the SOA client and the service hosts.

Class library, management tools, and sample applications

The Windows Azure HPC Scheduler SDK includes the Microsoft.Hpc.Azure.ClusterConfig class library and management tools that can package a Windows Azure application using the HPC plug-ins.

The sample solution referred to in Getting Started with Application Deployment with the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler includes a sample application that can be built and run from Visual Studio. This application uses the HPC plug-ins and the Microsoft.Hpc.Azure.ClusterConfig class library to enable your HPC or parallel application to run on Windows Azure.

Failover services

The Windows Azure HPC Scheduler supports failover services for the job scheduler, service-oriented architecture (SOA) jobs, and the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler Web Portal by enabling multiple instances of the following nodes:

  • Head node

  • Broker node

  • Web frontend node

noteNote
If a deployment includes multiple instances of a head node, those instances can run jobs (but not schedule jobs) simultaneously. This behavior is different from an on-premises Windows HPC cluster configured for high availability of the head node. In an on-premises cluster, only one head node can run or schedule jobs at one time.

Installation of hpcpack

Hpcpack is automatically installed on all nodes that you include in your Windows Azure HPC Scheduler deployment. You can use hpcpack to copy files from the storage account to a node in the deployment, or from a node to the storage account. For example, you can run hpcpack upload or hpcpack download as part of a startup script for your Windows Azure HPC Scheduler deployment, or as part of a job. For more information, see hpcpack.

Installation of hpcfile

Hpcfile is automatically installed on all nodes that you include in your Windows Azure HPC Scheduler deployment. You can use hpcfile to move files and perform file operations between one node and another node within the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler deployment. However, you cannot use hpcfile to move files and perform file operations between an on-premises computer and a node in a Windows Azure HPC Scheduler deployment. For more information, see hpcfile.

Known issues

HPC Cluster Manager cannot be used

HPC Cluster Manager cannot be used on the nodes in a Windows Azure HPC Scheduler deployment.

Issues when the same storage account is used for more than one deployment

It is possible to use the same Windows Azure storage account for more than one deployment of the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler. However, if you do this, the job submission pages, application profiles, and favorites that are created in the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler Web Portal of one deployment will appear in the other deployments. These could cause the appearance of unusable job submission pages, application profiles, and favorites in some deployments. To avoid this problem, use a separate Windows Azure storage account for each deployment of the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler.

The AzureSampleService solution for Windows Azure HPC Scheduler SDK 1.8 may be incompatible with Visual Studio 2012

Because of a change in the targeted version of the .NET Framework for new projects, the AzureSampleSolution.sln provided with the Windows Azure HPC Scheduler SDK 1.8 code samples may be incompatible by default with Visual Studio 2012. If you open the sample solution in Visual Studio 2012, you may see an error message similar to the following:

The type or namespace name 'ComputeCluster' does not exist in the namespace 'Microsoft' (are you missing an assembly reference?)

By default the solution is compatible with Visual Studio 2010 with SP1. If you want to use Visual Studio 2012, as a workaround, modify the CertificateGenerator.vcxproj file as follows:

  1. Unload the CertificateGenerator project from the solution.

  2. In a text editor, open the project file CertificateGenerator.vcxproj in the folder AzuresSampleService\CertificateGenerator.

  3. Change the value of the TargetFrameworkVersion element from v4.5 to v4.0. Save the changes.

  4. Reload the CertificateGenerator project.

Additional resources



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