[Beowulf] specific motherboard???

Bruno Coutinho coutinho at dcc.ufmg.br
Fri Dec 7 11:36:37 PST 2007


2007/12/7, Bill Broadley <bill at cse.ucdavis.edu>:
>
> amjad ali wrote:
> >  Hello all,
> >
> > I want to bulid a beowulf cluster of 16+1 nodes with each node having
> one
> > Intel Core2Duo (2.66 GHz, FSB 1333MHz, 4MB L2) processor and GiGE as the
> > interconnect. On this cluster, I would run my PETSc based CFD/FEM codes
> > (REQURING VERY FAST MEMORY/high memory bandwidth). Please help me out to
> > select out any one of the following boards:
>
> Keep in mind that the Petsc faq mentions:
> A fast, low-latency interconnect; any ethernet, even 10 gigE cannot
> provide
> the needed performance.
>
> I wouldn't assume that your workload will scale with gigE to 16 nodes.
>
> > 1) Intel Server board S3200SH, System Bus 1333MHz, supprting 240-pin
> DDR2
> > 800 MHz RAM
> > 2) Intel Desktop board DX38BT, System Bus 1333MHz, supprting 240-pin
> DDR3
> > 1333 MHz RAM
>
> The application performance difference should be minimal to nil.  2 800
> MHz
> 64-bit dimms can easily saturate the 64 bit 1333 MHz FSB.  I've not
> personally
> tested DDR3, but all the tests I've seen show minimal performance
> improvements
> at substantial price increases.
>
> > See that RAM speed difference. Given that keeping up running the cluster
> all
> > the time and loging on of many user simultaneously is not the concern.
> The
> > cluster may be dedicated to be used by one user whenever required. But
> it
> > may be the case that running a code for several days will be required.
> >
> > Would the desktop board DX38BT be suitable to run the cluster for
> several
> > hours/days?
> > Which Board you recommend for this scenario?
>
> Either, you didn't mention the budget, but I'd at least consider a faster
> network.


DX38BT have a 82566DC Gigabit controller, that isn't capable of jumbo frames
(frame size is limited to 1500 bytes).
But S3200SH have a 82566 controller too and a  82541PI that support jumbo
frames up to 16kb (probably your switch will support frames up to 10kb).
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