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Old 11-21-2005, 04:59 PM   #1
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Registered: Feb 2005
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Help choosing a distro

Here is the gist of what I am looking for. I would like to build a high performance cluster so that I can do two things:

A. View the disks on my cluster as one large network disk (shared filesystem)
B. Parallell certain programs, most likely AutoGK so that I could run encodes much faster (hopefully)

I have found some distros that address either of these two things individually, but none that incorporate both simultaneously. I thought of using ClackConnect to build a fileserver cluster in some way, but this does not address computing/memory power. I also looked into OpenMossix, but it is not designed for building high performace clusters for parallel applications, but high availability clusters for multiple applications. Basically, I want what would sort of be a NAS sollution, while at the same time a sollution for parallel computing. I planned on buying 4-6 identical Dell Optiplex desktops from RetroBox (~700 Mhz/256 Mb RAM) and tossing a 300 gig drive in each. This would give me 1.2-1.8 TiB of storage, 2.8-4.2 ghz CPU, and 1-1.5 gigs of RAM. It would also give me something to do in my spare time, and something new to learn about Any suggestions for a sollution that might satisfy these needs, or a reason why I should not play with such power for pure recreation are much appreciated

Last edited by BrokenBrick; 11-21-2005 at 05:01 PM.
Old 11-21-2005, 09:05 PM   #2
Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Tasmania
Distribution: Xen Debian Lenny/Sid
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I very much doubt that you will find a solution that involves:
1) downloading a nice cd
2) pressing a button and
3) all your requirements are fulfilled.

You should be able to make a network raid with gnbd devices:

I very much doubt that you'll get a MSWin computer to be a master
in any sort of Linux-based cluster, but the closest thing to the
'prepackaged distro' you seem to be looking for would be ClusterKnoppix:
Old 12-07-2005, 04:45 PM   #3
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I've been looking at LFS lately. The only problem is I am not sure if I can use it to build a distro exactly fitting these requirements. I thought it would be cool if the distro could boot from a live CD or a small partition, automatically mount already existing linux partitions (Have not decided whether NFS or LVM would be best), and detect free space and automatically add it to the existing share (in the case of a new drive/new system altogether) All it really needs to do besides this is to add them to a default samba share, or one specified in the setup where all new free space should be allocated. The hard part would be getting all the machines to relay and appear as one large network drive. This sort of distro would, I hope, provide something that I have found to be lacking in the market today, and that is the ability to add large volumes of networks storage at relatively low costs. Rather than buying raid arrays, SCSI disks, or NAS devices, one could simply build their own which would have great expandability and easy maintenence. If this type of cluster could also be used as an HPC for cPU intensive processes then that would be great, but I am not sure that this is possible. Any more info on this subject would be greatly appreciated, and if anyone is interested in helping me to build such a distro then please reply with your comments.


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