[Beowulf] Introduction and question

Darren Wise darren at wisecorp.co.uk
Thu Feb 28 17:57:08 PST 2019

Another one of us! I got a rush just then when I seen the figures 5-30 
servers in collections and then looked at my home built rig.




*Yes, you belong here, sorry I'm rammed with work currently! But you are 
very welcome and over the period of my membership I've been helped many 
times, even offered an open invite to come and visit a proper 
professional HPC data centre too of which soon I might hope to take them 
up on the offer if it still stands.
You'll meet some very knowledgeable folks here, Welcome any time!

Kind regards,

Darren Wise

P.S: If you spot any drink or drugs in the images, I never posted them.. 
Right?? (but want them back) I'm only kidding! Honestly!

On 25/02/2019 14:38, Andrew Holway wrote:
> One of us. One of us.
> On Sat, 23 Feb 2019 at 15:41, Will Dennis <wdennis at nec-labs.com 
> <mailto:wdennis at nec-labs.com>> wrote:
>     Hi folks,
>     I thought I’d give a brief introduction, and see if this list is a
>     good fit for my questions that I have about my HPC-“ish”
>     infrastructure...
>     I am a ~30yr sysadmin (“jack-of-all-trades” type), completely
>     self-taught (B.A. is in English, that’s why I’m a sysadmin :-P)
>     and have ended up working at an industrial research lab for a
>     large multi-national IT company (http://www.nec-labs.com). In our
>     lab we have many research groups (as detailed on the
>     aforementioned website) and a few of them are now using “HPC”
>     technologies like Slurm, and I’ve become the lead admin for these
>     groups. Having no prior background in this realm, I’m learning as
>     fast as I can go :)
>     Our “clusters” are collections of 5-30 servers, all collections
>     bought over years and therefore heterogeneous hardware, all with
>     locally-installed OS (i.e. not trad head-node with PXE-booted
>     diskless minions) which is as carefully controlled as I can make
>     it via standard OS install via Cobbler templates, and then further
>     configured via config management (we use Ansible.) Networking is
>     basic 10GbE between nodes (we do have Infiniband availability on
>     one cluster, but it’s fell into disuse now since the project that
>     has required it has ended.) Storage is one or more traditional NFS
>     servers (some use ZFS, some not.) We have within the past few
>     years adopted Slurm WLM for a job-scheduling system on top of
>     these collections, and now are up to three different Slurm
>     clusters, with I believe a fourth on the way.
>     My first question for this list is basically “do I belong here?” I
>     feel there’s a lot of HPC concepts it would be good for me to
>     learn, so as I can improve the various research group’s computing
>     environments, but not sure if this list is for much larger “true
>     HPC” environments, or would be a good fit for a “HPC n00b” like me...
>     Thanks for reading, and let me know your opinions :)
>     Best,
>     Will
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