[Beowulf] distributed file storage solution?

Robert Latham robl at mcs.anl.gov
Tue Dec 12 09:43:26 PST 2006

On Sat, Dec 09, 2006 at 08:21:48AM +0545, samit wrote:
> hello list,
> i am looking for a application (most preferably, but not necessarily OSS or
> free software) and that can create distributed, reliable, fault tolerant,
> decentralized, high preformance file server. I

Hi Samit

I think you might be going about the choice of file system from the
opposite direction.  What you want to do is not pick a file system,
but rather start with an application or suite of applications.  With
the workload in mind, then you can pick the file system that best
matches your needs.   

Questions you should ask:

- What is a typical I/O workload?  Large, contiguous regions or small,
  interleaved data?

- How many files will this workload create?  many files? One file?  

- Typical file size?  many gigs, or several kbytes?

- Is the workload parallel or serial?   Would two or more processes
  ever try to simultaneously read or write to the same flie?  How
  about directory?

the beowulf mailing list has a catch-all answer of "it depends on your
application", and that can be frustrating to hear, but it's never more
true than when trying to match file systems to workloads.


Rob Latham
Mathematics and Computer Science Division    A215 0178 EA2D B059 8CDF
Argonne National Lab, IL USA                 B29D F333 664A 4280 315B

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