undergrad senior project idea, help : running costs.

Daniel Kidger Daniel.Kidger at quadrics.com
Fri Sep 6 10:25:45 PDT 2002

Robert Brown wrote:

>Hmmm.  A 30 node 486 cluster has about the same aggregate bogoMIPS as a
>single P4.  It costs $1500/year to operate in electricity and cooling
>and shelf/floor space.  Even allowing for the cost of buying the P4, it
>is twice as cheap and we haven't even discussed Amdahl's Law with NICs
>on the old 486 ISA bus yet...

Not long ago I was an academic.  
The cost of running a 30 node 486 cluster would be *zero* since I would have
the old PCs for free from an ex-teaching facility, but more importantly
since the faculty automatically pay for all our electricity bills (!)

I would have to go out and pay real money to get the Pentium4.


ps. as an appendix to this, when I was a postgrad working late on winter
evenings and weekends after the heating system had gone off, we used to
switch on *all* the PCs in the lab that we could find to keep the place warm
enough to work. We would have frozen if all we had were a few low-power

Dr. Dan Kidger, Quadrics Ltd.      daniel.kidger at quadrics.com
One Bridewell St., Bristol, BS1 2AA, UK         0117 915 5505
----------------------- www.quadrics.com --------------------

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