Altair PBS Professional Overview

Altair PBS Professional is Altair’s industry-leading workload manager and job scheduler for high-performance computing (HPC) environments.

PBS Professional is a fast, powerful workload manager designed to improve productivity, optimize utilization & efficiency, and simplify administration for HPC clusters, clouds and supercomputers. PBS Professional automates job scheduling, management, monitoring and reporting, and is the trusted solution for complex Top500 systems as well as smaller cluster owners.

Why PBS Professional?

  • Voted #1 HPC Software by HPCWire readers
  • Proven for over 20 years at thousands of global sites
  • Built by HPC people for HPC people — Altair Knows HPC
  • Million-core scalability and end-to-end resilience
  • Flexible plugin framework to meet complex requirements with ease
  • Unparalleled security with EAL3+ certification and support for SELinux
  • Fast, powerful scheduling with power and topology awareness and GPU / Xeon Phi support
  • Global support with local experts in 48 offices across 22 countries
  • Click here to view more key capabilities
"PBS Professional is the right choice for any production systems with complex and changing requirements, from departmental to large-scale computing systems. The product's flexibility, and the company's expertise and support, is simply unparalleled."
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PBS Professional Capabilities

  • Powerful, policy-driven scheduling: PBS Professional accelerates job execution and selects optimal job placement across diverse, broadly distributed resources. With PBS Pro it’s easy to create intelligent policies to manage distributed, mixed-vendor computing assets as a single, unified system. Based on a policy-driven architecture, PBS Pro continually optimizes how technical HPC resources are used, ensuring maximized resource utilization and high throughput while respecting business priorities and SLAs – so more workload is executed faster using fewer resources.
    • More policy controls to better match your business needs
    • Expanded scheduling priority formula with full math functions (e.g., sqrt(), ceil(), …), conditional expressions, and a threshold for job start eligibility
    • General fairshare formula enables accruals per-Q, license sharing, time-of-day, power use, even combinations of these
    • Fine-grained targeting for preemption, configurable at the queue level (admin controlled).
  • Million-core scalability: Tested to 50,000+ nodes, Altair PBS Professional scales to support millions of cores with fast job dispatch and minimal latency.
  • Fast, reliable startup of huge MPI jobs: Altair PBS Professional is tested at tens of thousands of MPI ranks and minimizes delays caused by faulty nodes.
  • Fast throughput: Altair PBS Professional supports 1,000,000+ jobs per day.
  • Support for Linux Control Groups: cgroups eliminate resource contention so jobs run faster and don’t interfere with each other or the OS.*
  • Custom resources can be created directly using qmgr, without the need to restart the server
  • Long job and reservation names supported
  • Industry-leading security: Altair PBS Professional is the only workload manager to have achieved EAL3+ certification and the only workload manager offering integration with RedHat’s SELinux “cross-domain security” (or “MLS” — multi-level security) technology*
  • Higher utilization: Users can run jobs—or portions of jobs—in the period immediately before a planned outage. Typically, computer systems remain unused for several hours prior to outages since insufficient time is available to complete a job before the outage starts. PBS Pro fills those holes with malleable “shrink-to-fit” jobs, allowing useful work to be accomplished during the pre-outage period when otherwise no jobs would be running on the system — and thereby providing greater than 95% utilization. Jobs get done sooner and scheduling of the computing systems operates more efficiently. One customer reported they were able to reclaim 800,000 CPU hours over two months by using shrink-to-fit to run jobs prior to outages.
  • Flexible plugin framework: Altair PBS Professional offers a powerful yet easy to use plugin framework to customize implementations for meeting complex user requirements. For example, ‘Execution Event’ plugins let users control, modify, extend and change job lifecycle events in the execution stage, allowing for health checks prior to job start, filtering and changing computer behavior when the job starts, and ensuring cleanup is correct.
    • Expanded hook events for even more plugin extensibility and customization
  • Green ProvisioningTM: Altair PBS Professional can monitor, shutdown, and restart computing resources based on HPC workload requirements to support enterprise energy conservation initiatives. Validated by several leading sites, Green Provisioning has lowered their energy use by up to 30 percent. Read more about our Green Provisioning solutions here.
  • Topology-aware scheduling: Altair PBS Professional optimizes task placement for all HPC network topologies (including any topologies built on InfinibandC, GigE, or proprietary technologies from vendors like Cray and SGI), improving application performance and reducing network contention.
  • Cloud computing support: Altair PBS Professional is the workload manager for Altair’s private cloud appliance HyperWorks Unlimited. In addition, HPC Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) Clouds are being powered by the full PBS Works suite, including Altair's own HyperWorks On-Demand.
  • GPU and coprocessor scheduling: Altair PBS Professional supports both basic and advanced scheduling to GPUs and accelerators (NVIDIA, AMD) as well as to the Intel® Xeon Phi™ coprocessor.
  • Enterprise resilience: Altair PBS Professional provides a highly-redundant automatic fail-over architecture with no single point of failure — jobs are never lost, and jobs continue to run despite server failures, network failures, and even killing PBS daemons themselves. Node health checks can be written to ensure nodes are up and running properly; if a node fails during a job run, the job can be automatically requeued and run elsewhere. Custom checks can be added via our extensive plugin framework to ensure continuous operation, even in unique configurations
  • Comprehensive health check framework: Altair PBS Professional monitors your health check script behavior – either checks run or the node is marked down.
  • Expanded support: Intel MPI and MPICH2 on Windows; UNC paths for stdin, stdout, and file staging on Windows; SLES 12 and RHEL 7.
  • Docker Support: Users can run containers at scale and blend them with other workloads to support heterogeneous applications and environments in order to meet system needs and ensure performance is maximized through correct prioritization. Submit your email to download the technical paper.
* Currently Limited Availability — ask Altair for details about implementing this capability at your site

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