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The Parallel Processing Compute Server (PPCS) is a distributed-memory multiprocessing system consisting of System/370™ microprocessors (33 at present) interconnected through a matrix switch. This paper describes the hardware configuration, the extensions to the System/370 instruction set that are provided to support the distributed memory and interprocessor signaling, the modifications to the VM/SP operating system that allow it to run effectively on many closely coupled processors (most of which have no disks), and the application-support layer, which permits FORTRAN programs to take advantage of the highly parallel environment. Development of the PPCS is a joint effort of the IBM Böblingen Development Laboratory and the IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center. A prototype PPCS has been installed at CERN.
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