cluster fs

Rajeev Thakur thakur at
Thu Jul 13 09:43:09 PDT 2000

I couldn't agree more!


>  To: Alexander Korenkov <beo_ at>
>  cc: beowulf at
>  Subject: Re: cluster fs 
>  In-reply-to: Your message of "Thu, 13 Jul 2000 13:22:14 +0400."
>               <396D8A46.A68D28C9 at> 
>  Date: Thu, 13 Jul 2000 11:59:28 -0400
>  From: "Walter B. Ligon III" <walt at>
>  Sender: beowulf-admin at
>  Errors-To: beowulf-admin at
>  --------
>  There is no such thing as "the best file system for clusters."  It depends
>  significantly on what you want to do with the file system.  There have been
>  a number of meetings aimed at identifying the "heavenly" file system that
>  does everything for everyone, and the result of those meetings is it does
>  not exist, and probably never will (due to highly conflicting requirements
>  from different user communities).
>  Without knowing what it is you are trying to do with your file system, anyone
>  giving you such advise is blowing smoke up your ass.  For you, the BEST file
>  system may be something as simple as NFS or may be something much, much more
>  complex.
>  So here are a few things to consider (NOT an exaustive list):
>  is this for permanent storage or for short to medium term temp storage?
>  is performance the overiding concern?
>  is availability the overiding concern?
>  is flexibility the overiding concern?
>  is security the overiding concern?
>  is protection from data loss the overiding concern?
>  is ease of implementation/management/update the overiding concern?
>  how many nodes are you trying to support?
>  how many users are you trying to support?
>  is this a Beowulf, or some other kind of cluster (is the network private,
>  	are the nodes dedicated, is it used primarily for parallel computing)?
>  are you free to select any hardware you want, or are you constrained?
>  is cost an overiding concern?
>  what kind of applications do you expect to be running and what kind of
>  	file access patterns will they exhibit?
>  Quite frankly a small cluster with a small number of users that run apps
>  that don't do alot of I/O and you want to use cheap (IDE) disks and you
>  don't want to spend a lot of time installing and maintaining the thing
>  might get away with using NFS just fine.  "Balls to the walls" performance
>  is probably PVFS (thought I AM biased on that).  Issues of availability and
>  protection against loss and multi-user file access and stuff probably would
>  lean toward a number of other approaches.
>  So, I'm sure this is NOT what you wanted to hear, but this is as close to the
>  truth as I can give you.  Hope it helps!
>  Walt
>  > Hello!
>  > 
>  > Could you advice me - what is the best file system for clusters?
>  > If this cluster is homogeneous (Linux).
>  > 
>  > Thank you
>  > 
>  > Alexander
>  > 
>  > 
>  > 
>  > _______________________________________________
>  > Beowulf mailing list
>  > Beowulf at
>  >
>  -- 
>  Dr. Walter B. Ligon III
>  Associate Professor
>  ECE Department
>  Clemson University

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