[Beowulf] Confused over the term cluster

Tim Cutts tjrc at sanger.ac.uk
Sun Mar 30 05:35:46 EDT 2008


On 29 Mar 2008, at 4:09 pm, Alan Louis Scheinine wrote:
> I recommend giving two facts
> number of nodes
> number of cores
>
> A node is a box of CPUs that share memory.
> A core is, well, what everyone calls a core.
> In my opinion, the most ambiguous term is the
> number of CPU's because some people use the term CPU
> to refer to the number of sockets and others use
> the term to refer to the number of cores.
>
> For a more fine-grained description you can
> cite, in addition, the number of sockets and
> the number of cores per socket.

Just to be awkward, there are of course machines like the SGI Altix.   
Is it a cluster, or is it a node?  From the programmer's perspective  
it's the latter, from the architectural perspective, the former.

There's no real dividing line; there are machines across the entire  
spectrum.  But I'm just being difficult, generally I agree with what  
the others have said.

Tim


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