Beowoof: a Beowulf Cluster with Power Mac 6100s running Yellow Dog Linux






Installing Linux





Beowoof is a Beowulf cluster of nine Power Macintosh 6100 computers running Yellow Dog Linux 1.2.

The work nodes have 66MHz PPC 601 CPUs, 40MB of RAM, and 500MB SCSI hard drives. The main node has an additonal 1GB SCSI hard drive and an Asante NIC in the NuBus slot.

The main node runs in Usermode 5 so that the console supports X Windows while the work nodes run "headless" in Usermode 3. Users log into the main node using SSH. From here they distribute work to the other nodes with the multiprocessor facilities of mpich. If a user needs do something on one of the work nodes, he can 'su beowoof' and then 'ssh bN' where N is the number of the work node.

The main node is known as (with its own IP address)to the outside world and ( on the Beowulf network. The remaining nodes are known as b2 through b9 ( through The nodes are numbered beginning with 1 so that their naming scheme matches what ip addresses allow. Calling the main node b0 would require an address like, or an error-prone off-by-one scheme.

Beowoof has no active network ports on the outside except for those used by SSH. If you want an account on Beowoof, then you have to have an SSH client. NiftyTelnet works on Mac OS 9; ssh comes with OS X.

The main node has several NFS mont points which the work nodes mount as bNI:/mnt/b1/... The work nodes do not mount each others' hard drives.

On the main node, the built-in network connection is for the outside workd; the Asante NIC's connection is for the 10BaseT hub. I tried to connect the built-in network connection to the hub and the Asante card to my house network. However, my house network uses a 10/100BaseT switch and that made the Asante NIC barf. When I plug it in the other way it is less esthetically pleasing but it works.

  Beowoof: a Beowulf Cluster with Power Mac 6100s and Yellow Dog Linux. Updated 20020402.
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