Microsoft Confirms Interactive Supercomputing Acquisition, Shuts Down Star-P

peHUB yesterday caught wind of Microsoft’s supposed acquisition of Interactive Supercomputing, a company specialized in bringing the power of parallel computing to desktops, but was declined an official comment to the news following a request for confirmation. Redmond has this morning officially announced the acquisition by means of a blog post on the Windows Server Division Weblog and an information website, detailing that it has picked up the technology assets of ISC and that the latter’s employees – including CEO Bill Blake – will be joining the Microsoft team at the New England Research & Development Center in Cambridge, MA.

Microsoft says it will not continue developing Star-P (ISC’s flagship product) beyond version 2.8 which was released earlier this year, and that version 2.9 that was released to a few customers in Beta will not be released for production use by customers. Active Star-P customers who are using earlier versions of Star P were granted the right to upgrade to 2.8 by ISC prior to the close of the transaction. Microsoft did not acquire the customer contracts between ISC and their customers but says it will provide technical support to active customers through the longer of their existing support contracts or 12/31/2010.

Kyril Faeno, General Manager High Performance & Parallel Computing Technologies at the software giant, writes:

“This move represents our ongoing commitment to parallel computing and high performance computing (HPC) and will bring together complementary technologies that will help simplify the complexity and difficulty of expressing problems that can be parallelized. ISC’s products and technology enable faster prototyping, iteration, and deployment of large-scale parallel solutions, which is well aligned with our vision of making high performance computing and parallel computing easier, both on the desktop and in the cluster.”

Faeno adds that Redmond had already begun plans to integrate ISC technologies into future versions of Microsoft products and will be providing more information over the coming months on where and how that integration will occur. Microsoft will start providing support for ISC’s current Star-P customers immediately.

The terms of the acquisition remain undisclosed. According to peHUB’s earlier report, ISC had raised around $18 million in VC funding since 2005 from firms like Ascent Venture Partners, CommonAngels, Flagship Ventures, Fletcher Spaght Associates and Rock Maple Ventures.

A cached version of ISC’s website reveals that Star-P software allowed users to perform scientific, engineering or analytical computation on array or matrix-based data to use parallel architectures such as multi-core workstations, multi-processor systems, distributed memory clusters or utility/cloud-based environments.