Looking at the manufacturers (Fig. 3 and 4), we can recognise well-known vendors but newcomers in the high-performance field like IBM and others that have broadened their product spectrum to top level machines, like SGI. Market leaders and well-known companies have to fight a hard battle in this scientific market now.
Cray Research declined in the number of installations in Europe, in 1993 they had 58 installations, 42%, in 1994 only 48 machines that means only 34% in Europe. On the other hand the performance grew nearly by a factor of three, from 75 Gflop/s (39% of Europe) in 1993 to 205 Gflop/s (45%) for Rmax in 1994. The reason was the delivery of 4 big T3D and 3 C916/16 and one C916/12. It can be concluded that the users bought more powerful machines. This is underlined by the fact that machine number 2 in Europe in 1993 is now only number 14. SGI not to be found in the old list is now the second in installations and Rmax , 22 machines (15%) and 48 Gflop/s (11%). Intel is number 3 in installations with 16 machines (11%) but only 34 Gflop/s. Big Blue IBM started a good run in the parallel processing arena especially with its SP2, 12 machines (8%) and 39 Gflop/s. Ten of them are SP2 with 36.6 Gflop/s in total.
Figure 3: The distribution of systems on the different vendors in Europe.
Figure 4: The distribution of performance on the different vendors in Europe.
As Thinking Machines and KSR are out of business now, these figures are no longer relevant. The only European manufacturers in the list are still Meiko and Parsytec. The only company that sold more machines is Parsytec, now 7 machines (5% of Europe) and 10 Gflop/s (2%). The reason for this success is the courageous change from the Transputer as the computation engine to the Motorola PowerPlus processor. Meiko sold 3 machines in 1994, a 128 processor system to Lawrence Livermore and two small systems to CERFACS and CERN, in total 4 machines and 11.9 Gflop/s. Both companies do not play a major role in Europe or in the world. Other European vendors as Alenia Spazio from Italy or Parsys from UK till now have not produced such powerful machines. An other European manufacturer had to give up, Stern Computing.