Quote from abishur on August 3, 2011, 00:00
Okay first off, if anyone does use the R-Pi in a cluster I think it either needs to be called a druplet (druplets are the tiny bumps that make up a raspberry) or a bramble (which is actually a cluster of raspberries is called). Just a thought that makes me laugh.
The second (and actual point of my post) is how effective would a bramble be? I admit that the power requirements (electricity cost) and footprint of a traditional cluster has kept me from getting to play with them, but there's a couple things I think about when it comes to a R-Pi cluster.
1) CPU/Memory Power - The R-Pi isn't exactly built to be a powerhouse. I get the idea of a cluster is basically to harness a group of computers, distribute the load of processing but when you start off with a low resource device, it takes a lot of them to see the benefits you would see by clustering "normal" PCs
2) Power/Networking - Once you get enough of these devices together to get a really good cluster (bramble
) going you're going to need a significant amount of networking ports and power outlets. Once you get all that up and going do you think the cost (especially of the hub) will outweigh the benefits of low cost R-Pi. A lot of that might change if PoE is provided, then you'd just need a single PoE capable hub and you'd have both fronts covered.
3) OS support - I know we definitely have support for a regular Ubuntu install on the ARM11 but do you think there's a cluster ready OS compatible with the R-Pi
Finally, if we stepped back from the uber computer concept, do you think you could cluster say 4 or 5 of them together and get better performance then a cheap (under $300) desktop? Or am I just completely misunderstanding that aspect of a cluster?
Hunter Davis ( http://hunterdavis.com
) has written a nice series of articles on using pogoplug's as a distributed compile cluster for cross compiling x86-64. I think the same principles apply http://www.discursivelabs.com/?p=610
I don't want to advertise for him on this site but if you check any of your favourite ebook stores he has turned all his articles on this into an ebook for a few bucks and if you are a poor pennyless student he'll send you a copy for free if you ask nicely