Cluster Poll Results (tangent into OS choices)
josip at lanl.gov
Fri Oct 31 16:17:35 EST 2003
Vann H. Walke wrote:
> On Fri, 2003-10-31 at 12:38, John Hearns wrote:
>>On Fri, 31 Oct 2003, Robert G. Brown wrote:
>>>It is also very interesting to me that RH (for example) thinks that
>>>there is something that they are going to provide that is worth e.g.
>>>several hundred thousand dollars in the case of a 1000+ node cluster
>>>running their "workstation" product. Fifty dollars certainly. Five
>>>hundred dollars maybe. A thousand dollars possibly, but only if they
>>>come up with a cluster-specific installation with some actual added
>>I'll second that.
> Hmm... Let's take the case of a 1000 node system. If we assume a
> $3000/node cost (probably low once rack, UPS, hardware support, and
> interconnect are added in), we arrive at an approximate hardware cost of
> $3,000,000. If we were to use the RHEL WS list price of $179/node, we
> get $179,000 or about 6% of the hardware cost. That is assuming RedHat
> will not provide any discount on large volume purchases (unlikely). Is
> 6% unreasonable?
These days, one seldom builds 1000 node systems out of basic x86 boxes.
Consider a 1024 node AMD64 system instead: The list price on RHEL WS
Standard for AMD64 is $792 per node, or $811,008 for the whole cluster.
This is unlikely to create any sales.
RH should be paid for the valuable service they provide (patch streams
etc.) but this is not worth $811K to builders of large clusters. There
are other good alternatives, most of them *MUCH* cheaper. I fully agree
with RGB that RH needs to announce a sensible pricing structure for
clusters in order to participate in this market.
Would a single system image (BProc) cluster constructed by recompiling
the kernel w/BProc patches fit RH's legal definition of a single
"installed system" and a single "platform"? If so, $792 for a 1024-node
cluster would be quite acceptable...
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