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Personal Supercomputer





ocalhoun
I'm planning to make a small-scale beowulf-style supercomputer
(for those of you who are ignorant of these: they use multiple off-the-shelf PC's and linux to achieve massively parellell processing without the restrictive price of Big-Iron supercomputers)
Does anyone have advice or comments about this?

There are a lot of questions about why I want this:
1:Just for the heck of it
2:For later expansion to something that can handle complete molecular mapping of complex objects, and subsequent commpression and manipulation of that data.
3:I could perhaps sell proccessing time on it.
SoftStag
Never tried it, but curious as to why you want to do this? What demands so much processing power?
Arin
ocalhoun wrote:
Does anyone have advice or comments about this?

Try to get a closer look on these sites:

http://www.scl.ameslab.gov/Projects/parallel_computing/para_intro.html

http://www.sciencedaily.com/directory/Computers/Parallel_Computing


Cheers,
Arin.
mark
What do you do for so much processing speed? Just take a normal computer.
klingoncowboy4
I havn't tried but would if it had the money/storage space. This has been done with the PS2. What do you intend to make it do?
elcyron
ocalhoun wrote:

Does anyone have advice or comments about this?


we build a mosixcluster a few years back. quite interesting to see a proces hoping around in the network. never put it to full load, was just for testing.

we decided to use mosix rather then PVM, so we don't have to recompile our software with PVMsupport. (mosix is a linuxkernel modified for parallelcomputing plus a number of tools)
however we found that some software just isn't suited for parallelprocessing. the more I/O it does the less paralel it get's.
for example a brute force passwordcracker was only runing on one machine because there was almost no calculation to be done. a realy complex POVray job with lot's of calculation and only little I/O worked fine.
technology.sponge
don't c the point of having all these pc's
unless ur processing engineering data for sum obscenely complicated gadget, its xcessive

just get severals Apple G5's linked by optic fibre or several SUN microsystems workstations put 2gether
bananaphone
technology.sponge wrote:
don't c the point of having all these pc's
unless ur processing engineering data for sum obscenely complicated gadget, its xcessive

just get severals Apple G5's linked by optic fibre or several SUN microsystems workstations put 2gether


yeah - i agree
theres no need unlless you render video or compile programs
ammonkc
The new G5 powermacs can give you 4 processors (dual processor with dual cores) and they support up to 16 gigs of ram. if something like that can't handle it just link up another one.
ocalhoun
ammonkc wrote:
The new G5 powermacs can give you 4 processors (dual processor with dual cores) and they support up to 16 gigs of ram. if something like that can't handle it just link up another one.


Hey, I'm on a budget here, I can't afford junk like that!
Besides, that's starting to sound like a big-iron supercomputer.
For my eventual use of it, I will need to ba able to input massive amounts of data almost instantaiously.
Having a lot of nodes all with good input capability will accomplish that.

The solution of getting a powerfull mac or pc only (partially) fufills my goal #1, and not at all #2 and #3.
Tom7
are you going to use a gigibit ethernet connection or what?
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