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Author Topic: Sheevawulf - the Sheeva based Beowulf  (Read 3424 times)
finndo
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« on: June 12, 2009, 12:11:34 PM »

Anyone thought of making a Sheevawulf?

http://www.phy.duke.edu/~rgb/Beowulf/beowulf_book/beowulf_book/index.html

with the price of these, it would be very easy to buy 10 (or even 100) plugs, and create a default image, push it on all of them and set it up as a beowulf.  I'll be happy to do the work, if someone wants to buy them all!!!  I think it would be smokin!!
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iovnow
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« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2009, 12:49:22 PM »

I cant think of anything other than number crunching that a cluster would be good for.  Since the plug lacks a FPU it would not be a great option.
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adapted.cat
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« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2009, 06:59:22 PM »

Since the plug lacks a FPU it would not be a great option.

Even more of an issue is that the ARM is a 32-bit CPU. If you're not doing FLOPS on a cluster, you're either doing distributed I/O (and the plug doesn't have a hard drive or much memory) or integer ops, and there you'd like a minimum of 64 bits to play with. If you had a version of the plug with a FP or a big integer adder+multiplier built in, then you might be in business.

Even then, if you were buying 1000 of them you might want to ask for a different form factor so that you could rack mount them with centralized power and cooling. Perhaps even colocate lots of CPUs on a single board. When you really get to large scale computing, what costs you is not computation (that's picojoules) it's moving bits around on-chip (10s to 100s of picojoules) or off-chip (easily nanojoules).
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threar
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« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2009, 10:09:10 PM »

I'll be writing up something bigger than this quick post soon, but I wanted to mention that I created the equivalent to a "Sheevawulf" for Supercomputing 09 in Portland.  While there is a lack of fpu and some other things, (a) proof of concept is worth more than certain missing hardware, and (b) there are some interesting applications that can come from just having a simple MPI based system small enough to put on the corner of a desk.  Here's a picture of the cluster:

http://tinyurl.com/yc5kxac

(For those that don't trust tinyurl, you can also go to http://www.unknownnet.net/blog and see more)
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