[Beowulf] Re: recommendation on crash cart for a cluster room:fullcluster KVM is not an option I suppose?

Mark Hahn hahn at mcmaster.ca
Thu Oct 8 22:44:58 PDT 2009

> We have found that vendors are very helpful there. Setting the node to PXE
>is a big help, specially for new types of nodes. We require the latest
>firmware on the box (so I don't have to spend countless hours upgrading
>firmware), and a spreadsheet with Mac address/Asset information. We use a
>script to upload the info the DB.  Connect power, gigE,10gE,serial.  Then on
>box and it starts installing...

donno.  I can see that it would be easier to gain vendor cooperation
at the beginning, before they have the cash, or soon enough after acceptance
that they can still remember it ;)

OTOH, I think we all need _ongoing_ mechanisms to handle these issues,
since they WILL crop up again during the cluster's lifespan.  I'd probably
not burn my "vendor capital" on this stuff.  then again, maybe it's 
use it or lose it...

my first wish would be for some way to automate BIOS settings. 
node properties like MAC and SNs are easy enough to gather yourself. 
flashing BIOS versions is easy enough too via pxe - but again,
only as long as the flash doesn't fubar your settings...

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