[Beowulf] cluster storage design

Brian Henerey brian at cmrl.wustl.edu
Wed Mar 23 07:41:46 PST 2005

Hello all,


I have a 32 node cluster with 1 master and 1 data storage server with 1.5
TB's of storage.  The master used to have storage:/home mounted on /home via
NFS. I moved the 1.5TB RAID array of storage so it was directly on the
master. This decreased the time it took for our program to run by a factor
of 4. I read somewhere that mounting the data to the master via NFS was a
bad idea for performance, but am not sure what the best alternative is. I
don't want to have to move data on/off the master each time I run a job
because this will slow it down as more people are using it. 


I know there are probably many solutions but I'm curious what the people on
this list do. It seems to me that SAN's are very expensive compared to just
building servers with 4 x 500GB hard drives. I've considered just launching
my lam-mpi jobs from whatever storage server has the appropriate data on it,
but this doesn't seem ideal. 


How does performance compare from having the data local on the master via
running it off a PVFS? 


Thanks in advance,


Brian Henerey


Systems Analyst

Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance Laboratories

Washington University Medical School

660 S. Euclid Ave

Campus Box 8086

St. Louis, MO 63110


314-454-8368   314-454-7490(Fax)


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