[Beowulf] best linux distribution

Mike Davis jmdavis1 at vcu.edu
Mon Oct 8 13:52:45 EDT 2007


Robert G. Brown wrote:
> On Mon, 8 Oct 2007, Mike Davis wrote:
>
>> My experience is similar to Bill's. We've been using CentOs 3,4 for 
>> the past few years on our larger clusters. It is a good choice for 
>> stability, good performance, and since it is RH for SW compatability.
>
> The only thing I'd comment on that is negative about it is one of its
> "advantages".  There is a narrow line between stability and stagnation,
> and you have to figure out which side of that line your cluster will
> fall on.  Specifically, the fact that Centos/RHEL is frozen for two year
> intervals has two disadvantages for some people:
>

I don't see this as a problem in a production cluster. The fact is that 
I've been doing this stuff for a little over two decades and I can build 
anything that I need for an application. For me a manual library build 
for CentOs 3 is easier than trying to find support for FC4 or 
reinstalling FC 1x per year. My CentOs 3 nodes have had less than 2hours 
downtime in 2 years and that was due to a Power Upgrade at their 
location, that required a complete shutdown of all machines on the floor.

Now I should say, that I don't use diskless nodes, each node has its own 
OS disk and most have a separate /tmp disk for scratch use. That is one 
reason that we differ on OS, I believe.


Mike

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