[Bioclusters] Gentoo Linux for Science and Engineering

Andrew Fant bioclusters@bioinformatics.org
Fri, 6 Feb 2004 14:01:32 -0500 (EST)

   I am sending this out to let people know about a new mailing-list/IRC
channel which is being organized for people interested in the use of
Gentoo Linux in Computational Science and Engineering applications.  At
this point we are just getting started, but hopefully we will grow into an
organization which presents a one-stop resource about applying Gentoo to
CS&E applications from the desktop to HPC clusters and grids.  In
addition, we will be working closely with Gentoo developers and the Core
Gentoo management to provide feedback and guidance in how it can most
closely meet the needs of technical end-users.  Anyone who has an interest
in computational science and engineering and who is interested in learning
more about Gentoo or making it a better CS&E platform is most cordially
invited to join

About Gentoo Linux:

Gentoo Linux is a source-based distribution that makes the assumption that
the end-user or administrator knows more about what the system is supposed
to do than the distribution developers.  At the core of this is a package
system known as Portage, which is similar in form to the BSD ports system.
It uses the rough equivalent of an RPM spec file (called an ebuild within
Gentoo) to automatically download source, compile the package (and any
prerequisites) with appropriate optimizations and options as defined by
the user, and install it in such a way that it can be removed or upgraded
at a later time.  Sometimes referred to as a meta-distribution by the
developers, Gentoo initially installs a minimal environment and doesn't
force the end-user to install packages and services that are unwanted or
unnecessary.  Also, no network daemons are started on a system unless an
administrator expressly starts them.

Gentoo Linux is developed by a community of developers, much as Fedora and
Debian are.  At present, there are over 6000 different ebuilds for
different system utilities and applications in Portage.  Of these, more
than 100 are classified as scientific applications, including bioperl,
octave, spice, and gromacs.  In addition, many common scientific libraries
and HPC tools are present, including Atlas, FFTW, gmp, LAM/MPI and
openpbs.  The main website can be found at http://www.gentoo.org.

Contact information:

The mailing-list is only starting now, and is rather quiet, though I hope
to change that over the next couple of weeks.  To subscribe, send a blank
email to gentoo-science-subscribe@gentoo.org.  You will get a confirmation
message back.  For those who want to just ask questions or find out more
in a real-time setting, we are on IRC at irc.freenode.org in
#gentoo-science.  Of course, questions may also be directed to me at

Thank you for your time.  Please feel free to forward this information to
other groups that you feel would be interested in it. I apologize to
anyone who considered this an off-topic post.

Andy Fant

Andrew Fant      |   This    |  "If I could walk THAT way...
Molecular Geek   |   Space   |     I wouldn't need the talcum powder!"
fant@pobox.com   |    For    |          G. Marx (apropos of Aerosmith)
Boston, MA USA   |   Hire    |    http://www.pharmawulf.com