What’s new in ElectricAccelerator 6.1

Electric Cloud announced the release of ElectricAccelerator 6.1 a few weeks ago, the 24th feature release of ElectricAccelerator since the company was founded in 2002. This release incorporates several enhancements that make the product more robust and more flexible. Here are the key additions:

Workload reporting

In many large organizations, a single massive Accelerator cluster is shared across multiple development teams, in order to reduce administration overhead and improve hardware utilization — naturally each team has “their” agents, but if those are not in use, they can be easily made available to other teams. Often, the maintenance cost is shared by the teams using the cluster, according to the amount they use the cluster. In order to facilitate this use case, Accelerator 6.1 adds workload reporting. At the conclusion of each build, emake reports the total CPU usage for the build to the cluster manager. The administrator can see a summary of usage by running the “Build Users” report from the cluster manager web interface:

Example build users report; click for full size

Example build users report. Click to view full size.

Multi-interface network support

In data centers it’s not uncommon to find servers configured with two network interfaces: for example, a gigabit connection for communication with systems outside the data center, and a 10 GigE, fiber-optic or Infiniband connection for extremely high-bandwidth communication with other systems inside the data center. Accelerator 6.1 adds explicit support for this configuration, so data transfers between agents in the cluster utilize the high-bandwidth secondary interface for increased performance.

Strong checksums for data integrity

For years Accelerator has relied on the checksum built into the TCP standard to ensure integrity of network data transfers. Unfortunately that checksum is relatively weak, and in rare cases we found it was insufficient to detect data errors introduced by faulty network hardware. In this release, we added an application-layer checksum to further guard against such problems. Accelerator 6.1 uses CRC32-c, chosen for its robust error detection capabilities and high performance.

Expanded platform support

Accelerator 6.1 adds support for a few new platforms and third-party tools, including:

  • Ubuntu 11.04
  • ClearCase 8

What’s next?

It feels great to have wrapped up Accelerator 6.1, but we’re not resting on our laurels. We’ve already done a lot of work for 6.2, which includes some key robustness improvements that have been literally years in the making; and we’re getting started on 7.0, which currently is planned to include some really exciting new performance enhancements around incremental builds — more on that soon.

Accelerator 6.1 is available immediately for current customers. New customers should contact sales@electric-cloud.com.

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