[Bioclusters] Admins / node?

Christopher Dwan cdwan at bioteam.net
Thu Feb 2 09:50:50 EST 2006

Question on the state of the art in cluster management:

Approximately what level of dedicated support do folks on this list  
have / wish you have for your clusters?  Obviously, there are a lot  
of free variables, including but not limited to:

* Does the support person also do development, parallelization, or  
otherwise *use* the cluster?

* Do their other responsibilities come from the IT side or the  
research side (i.e:  Are we dedicating half of a unix admin, or half  
of a postdoc?)

* How many users are being supported, and to what level?

Setting aside these and similar details that would make for valid,  
comparable numbers, my gut feel is that a reasonable guess is one  
half time IT person for the first fifty nodes or so.  I think it  
scales logarithmically from there:   So, go up to an entire full time  
person for 50 - 150, and add support staff incrementally as the  
cluster becomes more huge.

-Chris Dwan 

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