[Beowulf] centos5 as cluster os

Tim Cutts tjrc at sanger.ac.uk
Fri Feb 15 09:33:18 PST 2008

On 15 Feb 2008, at 3:52 pm, Joe Landman wrote:

> Mark Hahn wrote:
>>> whats everyones take on centos as a cluster os.
>> works fine for me, but I also don't think distros are very important.
>> the critical things are:
>>    - must have a decent package system.  yum is; I'm not familiar  
>> enough
>>    with urpmi or apt to know them.  I think both provide appropriate
>>    management of dependencies.
> Yum is good, so is apt.  I still have a problem with yum wanting to  
> install i386 binaries as well as the x86_64 ones.  Haven't learned  
> how to stop that yet (probably simple too).
> There is much I do not like about rpm.  However it has a few nice  
> features.  I can't live without
> 	rpm -qa
> 	rpm -ql package
> 	rpm -qf file
> and am going through withdrawl as apt does not seem to provide these  
> (or if they do, it isn't at all obvious how/where).

You'll have to bear with me, since I don't know much about rpm.  In  
most cases there is equivalent functionality at both the dpkg level  
and apt level.

rpm -qa : lists all installed packages, right?

dpkg -l

works at the dpkg level, aptitude can do the same thing:

aptitude search '~i'

I tend to use aptitude these days, and don't often touch dpkg  
directly.  aptitude's search expressions are odd, but quite powerful,  
and allow you to do some useful things.  For example, following a  
sarge to etch upgrade, I wanted to remove all old sarge kernel  
packages (which are called kernel-image-*), regardless of which sarge  
package a machine was using, which was easily done with:

aptitude remove '~i~nkernel-image'

rpm -ql package : lists files installed by the package, right?

dpkg -L package

rpm -qf file : asks which package supplied a particular file?

dpkg -S file

Other useful Debian/Ubuntu package management commands:

apt-cache : queries the apt cache, and can report things like  
dependency information.  For example,

apt-cache rdepends libfoo

tells you all the packages which depend on libfoo (installed or  

apt-file : not installed by default, but phenomenally useful - it's  
dpkg -S for stuff that isn't installed yet.  So if you want to ask  
"what package do I need to install to supply this obscure header  
file", apt-file can tell you.

Then of course there's aptitude, which is slowly replacing both apt- 
get and dselect.


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