[Bioclusters] Local blast server, beowulf vs mosix

Eric Engelhard bioclusters@bioinformatics.org
Fri, 01 Mar 2002 15:17:38 -0800

jfreeman wrote:
> Danny,
> I agree with Eric's fast cluster building with boot disks, (I did it
> myself the first few times) and like the practical examples, but you
> will _really_ want to do remote booting of the nodes as your normal
> process, it will make node level install of software, OS, node
> configuration, versioning, etc. much much easier.
> A very good example page for this is the:
> Linux Terminal Server Project
> http://www.ltsp.org/
> It will get you well on the way...
> Good luck,
> Jim

Remote booting is slick, but is the advantage really that clear for this
kind of cluster (embarrassingly parallel, diskfull, and none-too-big)?
The NFS share on the master node holds the install image(s) and BLAST
executables. Any node specific features can be handled with
environmental variable calls. I suppose if you are updating the kernel
often, then remote booting is a far better choice, but who does that
with production machines (not me, call me chicken). You still have to go
through the DHCP/MAC routine, regardless.

That being said, I am going to try ltsp too. Thanks for the pointer,

Eric Engelhard - www.cvbig.org - www.sagresdiscovery.com