[Beowulf] RedHat Satellite Server as a cluster management tool.

Michael T. Halligan michael at halligan.org
Wed Oct 13 22:38:33 PDT 2004

Has anybody used (or tried to use) the RHN system as a HPC management 
tool. I've implemented this
successfully in a 100 host environment for a customer of mine, and am in 
the process of
re-architecting an infrastructure with about 150 nodes.. That's about as 
far as I've gotten
with it. Once I get past the cost, the poor documentation, and "OK" 
support, I'm finding
that it's actually a great (though slightly immature) piece of software 
for the enterprise.  The ease of keeping
an infrastructure in sync, and tthe lowered workload for sysadmins

At 100 nodes, the pricing seems to be about $274/year per node including 
licensing, entitlements, and the
software cost of a RHN server (add another $5k-$7k for a pair of beefy 
boxes to act as the
RHN server.. though as far as I can tell, redhat's specs on the RHN 
server are far exagerrated.. I
could get by with $2500 worth of servers on that end for the 
environments I've deployed on).  So, in the
end, $28k/year for an enterprise of 100 servers, in one environment has 
meant being able to shrink the
next year staffing needs by 2 people, and in one by one person, it pays 
for itself..

We have a 512 node render farm project we're bidding on for a new 
customer, and I'm wondering how those in the
beowulf community who have used RHN satellite server perceive it. So far 
we're considering LFS and Enfusion,
which are both more HPC oriented, but I'm really enjoying RHN as a 
management system.

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