Cheap PCs from Wal-Mart

Robert G. Brown rgb at
Tue Jun 3 12:34:30 EDT 2003

On Tue, 3 Jun 2003, Rajesh Bhairampally wrote:

> > > It is to teach a generation of kids about managing linux systems,
> > > writing programs, and the rudiments of cluster computing (Amdahl's law
> > > and so forth) in an inexpensive environment that they can "play" with.
> i am new to cluster computing environment and would like to learn with
> hand-on experience.
> i would like to start with two linux boxes (i recently placed an order for
> PCs from walmart) in
> my home environment. I am wondering if there are any tutorials/manuals for
> newbees to teach beowulf clustering concepts and hands-on tutorials. Any
> help is greately appreciated.

In Linux Magazine (already mentioned today) Forrest Hoffman (a long-time
beowulfer) runs an "Extreme Linux" column that you might find very
helpful.  Forrest published material every month that ranages from
newbie/tutorial to fairly advanced.  On www.linux-mag.html his current
online article appears to be "Message Passing for Master/Slave
Programs".  This article explores the use of MPI; previous columns have
covered PVM and lots of other stuff.

Both PVM and MPI have demo/examples in their installation kit(s).  There
is additional information on cluster setup and operation in many places
-- so many I have a hard time keeping them straight myself.  To help my
own memory, I've collected a LOT of resources you might find useful on

In particular,

has close to everything clusteroid that I've been able to find -- FAQ,
HOWTO, Underground, Scyld, bproc, FAI, online magazines devoted to
clustering in whole or in part, newsletters, and more.  This site is
"almost" up to date -- I rebuilt it a short time ago, and noticed that
it still has indentation problems while reviewing it a moment ago:-)

BTW (to all the list cluster experts) I'd cherish suggestions for
additions, deletions, or modifications to this page and its companion
vendors.php page.  Vendors should carefully read about the tee-shirt
clause.;-) Tee shirts aren't really required, but (as I note) they can't


> Thanks,
> Rajesh
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Robert G. Brown	             
Duke University Dept. of Physics, Box 90305
Durham, N.C. 27708-0305
Phone: 1-919-660-2567  Fax: 919-660-2525     email:rgb at

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