[Beowulf] SATA II - PXE+NFS - diskless compute nodes

John Hearns john.hearns at streamline-computing.com
Sat Dec 9 11:35:59 PST 2006

Buccaneer for Hire. wrote:
> [snip]
>> I agree with what Joe says about a few hundred nodes being the time you 
>> would start to look closer at this approach.
> I have started to explore the possibility of using this technology because I would really like to see us with the ability to change OSs and OS Personalities as needed.  The question I have is with 2000+ compute nodes what kind of infrastructure do I need to support this?
With 2000+ nodes you should definitely look at remote power control, and 
remote serial console access.

Also you might think of separate install servers for each (say) 500 
machines. Mirror them up to each other of course.
Its unlikely that you would ever reboot 2000 machines at once, but think 
ahead to (say) quick power on following a power cut.
I would hazard that any DHCP/PXE type install server would struggle with 
2000 requests (yes- you arrange the power switching and/or reboots to 
stagger at N second intervals).

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