[Beowulf] portable clusters
bushnell at chem.ucsb.edu
Mon Nov 28 14:34:55 PST 2005
On Mon, 28 Nov 2005, Jim Lux wrote:
> But basically, yes, the idea is to minimize the number of boxes.. One, the
> Windows laptop which talks to the hardware and feeds the cluster to do the
> data analysis, the other, the cluster box (we're not talking hundreds of
> nodes here.. probably more like 8-20) The cluster box is envisioned to have
> two wires: power and network, and is generically, the size of a big breadbox
> or a suitcase(i.e. it would fit in the trunk of a car or could be checked as
> Ideally, the cluster has NO permanent storage within it (i.e. if you turn off
> the power, all inside is forgotten). Removable media could potentially solve
> the problem, but then you've added a third thing to carry around and
> potentially lose, as well as adding a connector that has to be dealt with.
> Having it totally diskless helps with some environmental requirements (you
> can drop it, shock it, or vibe it, and it's easier to deal with the dust
> ingress problem)...
> The goal here is to have a credible concept to improve the "system"
> performance by adding on a computatational element to an existing portable
> system that is Windows based without requiring any hardware changes to the
> windows system, or without requiring significant software mods to the windows
> system (i.e. running some new program is ok, running a windows emulator is
Would something like the BlackDog device be useful? Plug it into
a USB port on the laptop, have it load the cluster... You would
probably still need the install image(s) on the Windows laptop as
BlackDog only holds 256/512 MB flash memory. But from the description
at http://www.projectblackdog.com/product.html it doesn't sound too
intrusive to your Windows system, depending on how you set it up.
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