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Re: How to build Debian Linux cluster?

Hi Sasha;

As to #1, I am not sure that I am reading your question properly, but
a large computer networked to many 'little' computers is superiour to
just having a bunch of little computers as there are tasks that the
'big computer' can accomplish much faster and more efficiently than
the 'little' machines can do even if they are a cluster.

In addition, the 'little' computers (even if they are not a cluster)
will do a lot of work for which the 'big' machine is NOT efficient.

By 'big' machine I am talking about things like 'main frames', super-
computers, vax-clusters, HP/Apolo clusters, etc.

#2 there are a number of network configuration maintenance tools that
make maintaining multiple machines rather simple.  Multiple installations
are not at all difficult (but could be a bit easier).

#3 if you are really talking about clustering and not just networking
then I am afraid that I don't know what the status is in Linux in that

I believe that if you do a price comparison on purchasing machines for
Linux as opposed to buying X-terminals you will find that the equalivent
display quality PC will not be significantly more expensive than the
X-terminal and it will add to the potential work capability of the
users.  Even without clustering, these PC's could off load work that
is handled very inefficiently by larger machines such as report writing
and some data analysis.

On Mon, May 04, 1998 at 06:42:44PM -0400, Alexander Kushnirenko wrote:
> Hi,
>   I have a question about organising Debian Linux cluster for small physics 
> experiment.  Half a year ago we bought a PC and I am running Debian 2.0 on it. 
>  My colleagues who usually work on X-terminals noticed certain advantages of 
> PC compared to X-terminal and basically the idea is instead of buying extra 5 
> X-terminals to buy 5 PC.  I think I understand how to maintain single-computer 
> system, but I have very little experience with clusters.
>   So far they want PC just to be an X-terminal, but I beleive they will be 
> interested in it's computing power very soon.
>   Questions:
> 1. What is better: one powerfull central computer surrounded by many little 
> ones?  OR democratic society of equal computers?
> 2. Is it easy to "clone" debian systems?  How should one maintain it? 
> 3. What are the recommendations about hardware specific to clusters would you
> make?
> 4. Any useful resources on this matter?  (Basically how to approach the 
> problem).
> Thanks you,
> Sasha.
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