SGI Origin 2000

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Note: More content about the Origin 2000 / Onyx2 family is available on the Onyx2 page.

Origin 2000 deskside server
Origin 2000 rackmount server at Universität zu Köln
The 512 CPU Origin 2000 "Lomax" system at NASA Ames
Later Origin 2200 deskside

The SGI Origin 2000, code named Lego, is a family of mid-range and high-end servers developed and manufactured by SGI and introduced in 1996 to succeed the SGI Challenge and POWER Challenge. At the time of introduction, these systems ran IRIX 6.4 and later, IRIX 6.5. A variant of the Origin 2000 with graphics capability is known as the Onyx2. An entry-level variant based on the same architecture but with a different hardware implementation is known as the Origin 200. The Origin 2000 was succeeded by the Origin 3000 in July 2000, and was discontinued on 30 June 2002.


Model # of CPUs Memory I/O Chassis Introduced Discontinued
Origin 2100 2 to 8 Up to 16 GB 12 XIO Deskside ? 31 May 2002
Origin 2200 2 to 8 Up to 16 GB 12 XIO Deskside ? 31 May 2002
Origin 2400 8 to 32 Up to 64 GB 96 XIO 1 to 4 racks ? 31 May 2002
Origin 2800 32 to 128 (256 and 512 unsupported) Up to 256 GB (512 GB unsupported) 384 XIO 1 to 9 racks (with Meta Router) ? 31 May 2002

Note: The highest CPU count that the SGI marketed the Origin 2000/28000 was 128 CPUs. However, three Origin 2000 models were made that were capable of using 512 CPUs and 512 GB of memory, but these were never marketed as a system to customers. One of the 512-CPU Origin 2000 series was installed at SGI's facility in Eagan, Minnesota for test purposes and the other two were sold to NASA Ames Research Center in California for specialized scientific computing. The 512-CPU Origin 2800s cost roughly $40 million each and the delivery of the Origin 3000 systems, scalable up to 512 or 1024 CPUs at a lower price point per performance, made the 512-CPU Origin 2800 obsolete.

Several customers also bought 256-CPU Origin 2000 series systems, although it was never marketed as a product by SGI either.

The largest installation of SGI Origin 2000 series was ASCII Blue Mountain at Los Alamos National Labs. It included 48 Origin 2000 series 128-CPU systems all connected via HIPPI for a total of 6144 processors. At the time it was tested, it placed second on the TOP500 list of fastest computers in the world. Note that this test was completed only with 40 nodes with 128 CPUs each and recorded a sustained 1.6 teraflops. With all nodes connected, it was able to sustain 2.1 teraflops and peak of over 2.5 teraflops.

Los Alamos also had another 12 Origin 128-CPU systems (for a total of 1536 CPUs) as part of the same testing.

The Origin 2100 is mostly the same as the other models except that it is not upgradeable to other models. (unless the router cards, etc. were replaced)

Status Leds