[Beowulf] What services do you run on your cluster nodes?

Paul Van Allsburg vanallsburg at hope.edu
Tue Sep 23 13:57:51 EDT 2008

Donald Becker wrote:
> On Mon, 22 Sep 2008, Perry E. Metzger wrote:
>> Prentice Bisbal <prentice at ias.edu> writes:
>>> The more services you run on your cluster node (gmond, sendmail, etc.)
>>> the less performance is available for number crunching, but at the same
>>> time, administration difficulty increases. For example, if you turn off
>>> postfix/sendmail, you'll no longer get automated e-mails from your
>>> system to alert you to a problem.
>> If a machine isn't sending out more than, say, 20,000 email
>> messages an hour, you won't notice the additional load Postfix puts on
>> a modern machine with any reasonable measurement tool.
>> FYI, a modern box running postfix can handle millions of messages per
>> hour before it starts getting into trouble.
> We solved the problem by using a full featured, fully-installed head
> ("master") node that ran all standard services, and having the rest of the
> nodes be start-from-zero compute slaves that don't run anything but the
> application. This is much different than "what can I eliminate" mindset.
> Designs that start from a full install and strip it down often eliminate
> too much, or don't understand that unused "idle" things aren't really
> free.
So where would one download such a gem? 


Paul Van Allsburg       
Natural Sciences Division, Hope College
35 E. 12th St.  Holland, Michigan 49423

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