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Bull unveils extreme factory: the first fully integrated on-demand, pay-as-you-go computer simulation offering

  • Ease of use, cost control, rapid access, security' customers simply choose the amount of processing power they need and only pay for what they use. From now on, unlimited innovation is available to everyone.
  • extreme factory offers both PaaS (Platform as a Service) and SaaS (Software as a Service) options, working in close partnership with Independent Software Vendors (ISVs).
  • extreme factory brings computer simulation into the Cloud Computing era.

Paris, November  17, 2010 -

Today, at the SC'10 supercomputing conference in New Orleans, USA, Bull unveiled extreme factory, the only fully integrated pay-as-you-go computer simulation offering. Thanks to extreme factory, organizations of every size will be able to freely innovate without the need for major investment in powerful computing resources. All that's needed is Internet access via a dedicated portal: and the organization is ready to 'stay lean: compute smart'.

Working in partnership with ISVs, Bull has created extreme factory drawing on its expertise in the design and development of some of the world's most powerful supercomputers, as well as in the development of secure Web portals and platforms, infrastructure hosting and high-bandwidth networks.

extreme factory: a revolution giving total freedom to innovate

Although innovation is recognized as a powerful driver for growth, it is still too often reserved only for businesses that can afford it. But in times of crisis when the leaders of tomorrow are being created, computer simulation is seen as a key accelerator for the development of businesses and society as a whole, in areas as varied as environment, physics, oil and gas, aeronautics and movie special effects... But the advent of new Cloud Computing technologies is redefining the conditions for accessing and using computer tools. Based on the idea of buying services on demand via the Internet, from now on Cloud Computing will turn ways of thinking about innovation upside down. Computer simulation is all the more stimulating now that it can be implemented via Cloud Computing.

In this new economic context, extreme factory is simply the most innovative, powerful and simple response currently available, enabling businesses to 'stay lean: compute smart', establishing a new relationship between business and innovation.

As Philippe Vannier, Chairman and CEO of Bull, explains: "With extreme factory, Bull is once again operating at the leading edge, opening up access to computer simulation for businesses and research labs of all sizes. Because intensive computing has become a vital tool for innovation and developing a more environmentally-friendly digital economy, we are proud to be playing an active part in the democratization of Extreme Computing, and we will continue to do so as part of the French government's economic stimulus initiative focused on investing for the future, with the Numinnov project which is aimed at further accelerating this momentum."

extreme factory is designed to be especially useful for:

  • Large organizations who already have their own computing resources but are looking for additional processing power to deal with peaks in workload, so they can respond to their immediate requirements for innovation

  • SMEs and design offices who have basic computing resources, but cannot invest further in these resources and would rather seize the opportunity to outsource hardware and technical support so they can concentrate their own resources on their core business

  • Creative media studios who need computing resources to create High Definition and 3D special effects, and convert different video formats. 

Freed from the shackles of technology, organizations now have complete freedom to innovate: with extreme factory, they have no need for physical infrastructures and no more maintenance requirements, while still having access to high-performance tools for innovation.

Pascal Barbolosi, Vice-President of Bull's Extreme Computing Business Unit, explains: "You will be able to access your working environment from anywhere in the world, from a terminal connected to the Internet - even your mobile phone or laptop - allowing you to innovate in total security, while only paying for the resources that you use as you need them. That's the thinking behind extreme factory, which will give everyone access to power! Now innovation is within anyone's grasp!"

The only fully integrated, pay-as-you-go computer simulation solution

For each organization, extreme factory offers a dedicated area, from which it can manage its projects and data, as well as its results, from a single access point. Accessible on line, extreme factory offer a secure portal, where data confidentiality is guaranteed thanks to all-round development, management and hosting services provided by Bull.

extreme factory is a flexible, made-to-measure solution, which replicates the customers own processing environment, which can be customized according to need, which gives access to numerous existing business applications as well as to customer-developed applications and which provides visualization tools. The user interface is surprisingly simple to use, fast and capable of being adapted to customers' needs, which makes it ideal for tackling workload peaks.

With extreme factory, Bull is once again opening up access to the very best available technology, at any time. Bull has expertise in the entire IT value chain, as a hosting services provider, network operator, manufacturer of bullx supercomputers and systems integrator, and draws on its skills in all key areas of High-Performance Computing (HPC). Already, extreme factory offers the processing power of over 20,000 cores, with more coming on stream in the near future. Openness is at the heart of the approach taken by this pioneer in Open Source: this new offering is based on an open system adapted to run all industry-standard processing codes, as well as on an open environment built largely using Open Source components that have been integrated, tested and packaged by Bull.

With its revolutionary proposition, that the user should only have to pay for what they use, extreme factory is also a smart system, in tune with the demands of eco-friendly technology businesses, and their new requirement for funding growth.

"IDC is seeing more HPC sites seriously evaluating, and in some cases already employing, HPC outsourcing as a way to save money on internal staffing and other data center costs. Some sites simply do not want to be in the business of operating their own HPC data centers, while for others outsourcing can be an attractive alternative for increasing the capacity of existing data centers. Bull is positioned well to exploit the expected growth of HPC outsourcing, especially as more sites turn to public cloud computing services for some or all of their HPC workload needs," declared Earl Joseph, Program Vice President, High-Performance Computing, IDC.

The first solution developed in partnership with leading ISVs

Designed specifically for computer simulation, extreme factory is the first solution to have been developed in partnership with numerous ISVs; clearly demonstrating the inspiring relationships they have established with Bull.

"extreme factory offers immediate access to Scilab, the world-leading open digital processing software, on bullx supercomputers. With no need for significant investment in computing resources, SMEs and design offices now have access to the highest levels of performance for their computer simulations, and can take advantage of both Bull's expertise in Extreme Computing and Scilab Enterprises' support services. This represents a major new offering for computer simulation and design in the world of scientific computing," explains Claude Gomez, Scilab Consortium Director.

"extreme factory is the perfect answer to the requirements we identified to help us speed up our growth. Our customers can now have immediate access to Bakery technologies in remote mode. Working together, The Bakery and Bull will be able to guarantee the highest levels of performance to the 3D imaging industry, on a pay-per-use basis," has declared Erwan Maigret, CEO, The Bakery.

"ESI Group welcomes the launch of extreme factory by our strategic partner Bull. At ESI we provide our customers with remote access to our virtual prototyping solutions. This is why we're playing an active role in implementing this novel distribution model, which addresses evolving market demands. We're convinced by the necessity and benefits of this approach, which provides greater flexibility to our customers", said Vincent Chaillou, Chief Operating Officer, ESI Group.

"CD-adapco's Power-on-Demand redefines the standard for engineering simulation. Everyone can now access STAR-CCM+ by-the-hour, on an unlimited number of cores and uncounted number of sessions at an attractive rate. Bull extreme factory complements this perfectly by providing a dedicated hardware infrastructure that efficiently adapts to user demand," commented Jean-Claude Ercolanelli, VP Product Management, CD-adapco

Bull and Extreme Computing: a comprehensive, complementary and made-to-measure offering

Helping businesses to innovate rapidly and at minimum cost, speeding up research, guaranteeing sovereignty... these are the driving forces behind Bull's Extreme Computing offering, which is based on a very high added value range of complementary solutions and services:

  • bullx supercomputers: state-of-the-art technology solutions for business, research centers and hosting service providers who want to own their own processing resources

  • mobull: a hosted, container-based supercomputer offering for organizations who need access to a full Data Center in the space of just a few weeks; easily set up in just a parking space or a hangar...

  • Services from consulting to systems integration and hosting: through its own in-house teams and specialist subsidiaries in France (Serviware) and Germany (Science + Computing), Bull provides a comprehensive services offering for its customers; from architecture consulting to infrastructure optimization, integration and hosting

  • extreme factory: the ideal solution for businesses that want on-demand access to their processing resources, with consulting and support services provided by Bull's expert teams. 

Bull, a world-class player in Extreme Computing and the digital economy

As the designer of Tera 100, the first system to break the Petaflops barrier in Europe, Bull has confirmed its place as an established player in Europe's digital economy - capable of combining local and international technologies and skills to energize European competitiveness - and ranking among the very best in the world. By way of proof, after the previous SuperComputing conference in November 2009 - where bullx was named as the best supercomputer in the world and ranked as one of the five new products to watch ¿ this year Bull itself has been recognized by the readers of HPCwire as one of the "Top 5 Vendors to Watch in 2011".


extreme factory - which includes a secure Web portal and both hardware and software resources - is due to be available in January 2011.

extreme factory price list:

  • Between E0.2 per core, per hour and E0.3 per core, per hour depending on the number of blade servers being used and the overall usage time

  • Between E0.15 per GB, per month and E0.3 per GB, per month depending on the number of storage systems involved and how long they are used for

  • Consulting services: E1,300 a day

  • SaaS services: varies according to publishers' tariffs 

Technical features/specifications

extreme factory provides a comprehensive processing and computer simulation environment in Cloud Computing mode, built using innovative solutions from Bull's Extreme Computing product range.

Users access the services via a secure, SSL-certified portal to obtain all the necessary functionality for a complete HPC workflow:

  • Project organization

  • Uploading input files and data management

  • Publication of applications

  • Submission and monitoring of processing jobs

  • Remote visualization and downloading of results.

The Data Centers involved are equipped with many thousands of Intel® Xeon® processing cores, installed on general-purpose bullx B500 servers and hybrid B505 processing servers linked together via an InfiniBand® QDR network. They are also equipped with a storage environment, with a distributed file system for maximum performance during the processing stages, as well as permanent storage facilities enabling the user, thanks to remote visualization, to enjoy all the convenience of being a local user while avoiding data transfer as far as possible.

About the Scilab Consortium

Created in 2003 at the initiative of INRIA, the Scilab Consortium joined the Digiteo research network in 2008. Currently, twenty-four organizations combine their efforts within the consortium to make Scilab software, the free reference in numerical computation.

For more information: www.scilab.org

About Scilab Enterprises

Scilab Enterprises is the services company and publisher for Scilab software. It develops and markets - directly or through an international network of affiliated services providers - a comprehensive set of services for Scilab users. In partnership with the Scilab Consortium, Scilab Enterprises provides its expertise to both companies and academics. The ultimate goal of Scilab Enterprises is to help make the use of Scilab even more effective and easier.

For more information: www.scilab-enterprises.com

About The Bakery

The Bakery is an innovative technology company providing revolutionary software solutions for the production of CGI (Computer Generated Imagery, or '3D') animated feature films, and industrial and architectural visualization. The Bakery develops high-performance, robust products that enhance user creativity, speed up the creative process and optimize the management of production pipelines.

The Bakery was founded in 2007 by Erwan Maigret and Arnauld Lamorlette, both recognized, award-winning professionals from the feature film and digital imaging industry who have played central roles in the production of some of Hollywood's most successful animated movies of recent years.

For more information: http://thebakeryanimation.com

About ESI

ESI is a pioneer and world-leading provider in virtual prototyping that takes into account the physics of materials.

ESI has developed an extensive suite of coherent, industry-oriented applications to realistically simulate a product's behavior during testing, to fine-tune manufacturing processes in accordance with desired product performance, and to evaluate the environment's impact on performance.

ESI's solutions fit into a single collaborative and open environment for End-to-End Virtual Prototyping, thus eliminating the need for physical prototypes during product development.

The company employs over 750 high-level specialists worldwide covering more than 30 countries.

For more information: http://www.esi-group.com

About CD-adapco

CD-adapco is the leading global provider of full-spectrum engineering simulation (CAE) solutions for fluid flow, heat transfer and stress. STAR-CCM+ and STAR-CD provide the world¿s most comprehensive Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) solutions, with the STAR-CAD Series as an easy-to-use, CAD-embedded front door to the full spectrum of CD-adapco solutions, backed by more than 30 years of extensive experience in CAE consulting.

For more information: http://www.cd-adapco.com

About Bull, an Atos company


Bull is the trusted partner for enterprise data. The Group, which is firmly established in the Cloud and in Big Data, integrates and manages high-performance systems and end-to-end security solutions. Bull's offerings enable its customers to process all the data at their disposal, creating new types of demand. Bull converts data into value for organisations in a completely secure manner.

Bull currently employs around 9,200 people across more than 50 countries, with over 700 staff totally focused on R&D. In 2013, Bull recorded revenues of €1.3 billion.

For more information:
http://www.bull.com  /  http://www.facebook.com/BullGroup  /  http://twitter.com/bull_com


About Atos

Atos SE (Societas Europaea) is a leader in digital services with 2013 pro forma annual revenue of €10 billion and 86,000 employees in 66 countries. Serving a global client base, the Group provides Consulting & Systems Integration services, Managed Services & BPO, Cloud operations, Big Data & Security solutions, as well as transactional services through Worldline, the European leader in the payments and transactional services industry. With its deep technology expertise and industry knowledge, the Group works with clients across different business sectors: Defence, Health, Manufacturing, Media & Utilities, Public Sector, Retail, Telecommunications and Transportation.

Atos is focused on business technology that powers progress and helps organizations to create their firm of the future. The Group is the Worldwide Information Technology Partner for the Olympic & Paralympic Games and is listed on the Euronext Paris market. Atos operates under the brands Atos, Atos Consulting, Atos Worldgrid, Bull, Canopy, and Worldline.

For more information, visit: atos.net

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Phone: +33 1 58 04 05 02
E-mail: aurelie.negro@bull.net

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Aurélie Negro
+33 1 58 04 05 02