[Beowulf] Node Boot Problem ~ No Keyboard/Harddrive/Diskdrive

Brent M. Clements bclem at rice.edu
Wed Jun 23 10:46:03 PDT 2004

Just from what your saying, it sounds vaguely like a motherboard problem.

Does it happen on any other node similiar to this one?

I'd say Replace motherboard  and try again.


Brent Clements
Linux Technology Specialist
Information Technology
Rice University

Linux at Rice news and information
available only at http://linuxsupport.rice.edu

On Wed, 23 Jun 2004, Phil Smith wrote:

> Hello all,
>  I am currently trying to configure a Beowulf cluster and I'm having a
> strange problem. The nodes all use PXE and TFTP to acquire the kernel
> from the server and then commence booting.
>  If the node has a keyboard/hard-drive/floppy-disk-drive plugged into
> it, then the system boots perfectly. However, if the node has none of
> these devices plugged in, then it crashes (screen goes blank, nic
> light goes out). When exactly the node crashes is not consistent,
> however it always occurs after the kernel has been transfered and
> before the login screen appears.
>  I have tried debugging the problem with no success.
>  I first thought that the node was trying to log the 'no keyboard
> error' to a local disk, for some reason. But ruled that out when I saw
> the problem still occurred when a floppy-drive was present (with no
> floppy in the drive).
>  I have already tried several different kernels with various settings
> (v2.4.20-31.9, v2.4.24, v2.2.26) and the exact same problem remains. I
> have stepped through the startup file and found nothing which should
> cause such an issue.
> The nodes are P4 2.5 Ghz, 512 mb RAM, Intel D845GERG2 motherboards.
> There are 64 of them and all of them are diskless. I would rather not
> try to resolve this issue by 'buying 64 keyboards'.
> Any help/suggestions on resolving this issue would be greatly appreciated.
> Cheers,
>  -Phil Smith
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