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1 Introduction

This guide is intended for those who are learning to use the Intel iPSC/860 parallel supercomputer (such as the one at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory). Our goal is to present some of the salient features and capabilities of the iPSC/860 in a concise manner and not to overwhelm the reader with details. However, we have included some of the details that are essential for beginners to get their first program to compile successfully. Programming tools and sources for additional information are also discussed.

The hardware and/or software configuration tend to vary with site. Please consult your local system administrator for site-specific information.

It is assumed that most users will program either in C or in FORTRAN. All illustrative examples are presented in C. Everything we say about C programs usually applies to FORTRAN programs as well.

The rest of this guide is organized as follows. Section 2 gives an overview of the iPSC/860. Section 3 is about accessing the iPSC/860. Issues specific to programming on the iPSC/860 are discussed in Section 4. Section 5 surveys system commands and Section 6 describes some useful system calls. Sections 7 and 8 discuss interprocessor communication by message passing. Files are discussed in Section 9. Section 10 surveys some of the software tools and libraries available. Sources for more information are listed in Section 11.