[Beowulf] Cluster Diagram of 500 PC

Greg Lindahl lindahl at pbm.com
Wed Jul 11 09:45:41 PDT 2007

On Wed, Jul 11, 2007 at 12:18:10PM -0400, Mark Hahn wrote:

> my question is: do switches these days have smart protocols for 
> mapping and routing in such a configuration?  I know that the original 
> spanning tree protocol would reduce such a config to a single tree,
> turning off all the redundant links, effectively creating a hotspot
> and ~doubling hop-counts.  maybe with vlans this could be avoided?

Yes, you can do more interesting routing with vlans; I've run into
a couple of companies that have claimed to patent it, but there's
probably tons of prior art from previous Ethernet generations.

It's also the case that some ethernet chipsets support alternate
non-standard routing methods; they're designed for bulding big
switches composed of many switch chips, and they support arbitrary
topologies. I've never seen a switch touting this ability, though.

-- greg

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