[Beowulf] Which do you prefer local disk installed OS or NFS rooted?

Brent M. Clements bclem at rice.edu
Wed Jul 14 16:38:39 EDT 2004

Good Afternoon All:

Let me start by giving a little background.

Currently all of our clusters on campus have local disks which by using
the systemimager suite of tools has an os image installed
There are one or two clusters that are nfsrooted.

I'd like to know from all of you, which way is everyone leaning when it
comes to clusters and os distribution.

Do you a. Install your OS on each local disk?(using whatever method,
kickstart,systemimager, etc) or b. do you nfsroot and then use the local
disk space as scratch and swap.

What benefits and drawbacks have all of you seen by doing either?

The Research/linux support group(which I am team lead of) here is leaning
towards moving all of our clusters to model b. We've done both and from a
sysadmin perspective we've found doing most things by nfs root a heck of
alot easier than maintaining a systemimager configuration.

Thanks in advance!


Brent Clements
Linux Technology Specialist
Information Technology
Rice University

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