[Beowulf] Wireless clusters (Bridging 802.11a)

Jim Lux james.p.lux at jpl.nasa.gov
Thu Jan 15 00:10:46 EST 2004

> take a look at the Actiontec cards. They have a line of prism based cards
that are supported by linux and when I was
> talking with them they made sounds like they were going to stay with the
prism chipset for a while.

While the prism chipset is interesting (for other reasons, particularly the
Prism2, not so much 2.5 and 3 or even newer ones), they do not support the
802.11a at 5GHz form of wireless LAN. (for what it's worth, the prism set is
interesting because it was originally a Harris product, then Intersil, and
now GlobespanVirata. However, Harris has a long history of making
military/space qualified components, and it turns out that the Prism 2 chip
set is made on a fab line that is compatible with radiation tolerant

> >
> > In all cases, I'd have an "access point" of some sort to talk to my head
> > node/NFS, etc.
> > >
> > Part 2 of the quest.................
> >
> > I'm also looking for suggestions on performance and timing tests to run
> > on this cluster once it's assembled.  Aside from the usual network
> > throughput (benchmark program recommendations requested), I'm interested
> > in techniques to look at latency, latency distribution, and dropped
> > packets/retries, since I suspect that wireless networks will have very
> > "unusual" statistics compared to the usual cluster interconnects.
> I think you will want to play with the payload size. It seems to make a
big difference for what we are doing(net boot
> over wireless).
> >

Thanks.. I suspect that measurements vs packet size are of some interest.
(something like HINT, except for size instead of computation).

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