While many groups are working on larger and larger clusters, we have
developed an interesting alternative: the cluster in the small.
The Carry-On Cluster is a portable, eight-processor Pentium III-based
Linux cluster connected with a Fast Ethernet switch. It also includes an
802.11b base station for wireless access. The cluster is packaged in a
single roll-along carry-on case.
Why a carry-on cluster? There are times that we need to run demonstrations
and tutorials at remote sites. These arrangements might be difficult or
The carry-on cluster provides a complete, self-contained,
pre-configured parallel computer, requiring only a single power outlet.
The remote sites often do not have suitable hardware available,
for example at hotel meeting rooms.
If suitable hardware is available, it is difficult to ensure
that the systems have a reasonable software configuration, including
the correct versions of libraries, compilers, operating system,
architecture, interconnect network, and user interface. Differences in
any of these areas can kill a demo.
Running a demo remotely using machines from our home site is, at best,
awkward and often impossible. Unpredictable bandwidth on the Internet
can make the remote access painful and disrupt a demo, while firewalls
and gateways may make a demo impossible.
Nodes: Cell Computing, Inc. (8)
Processor: Intel Pentium III (Coppermine)
RAM: 256 MB per node
Disk: 6 GB per node
Network: 100baseT connector
Other connectors (each node): keyboard,
XVGA, PC card, USB, serial
Interconnect: Netgear 16-port 10/100baseT
Wireless: D-Link DWL-650 802.11B
wireless PC card configured as an Access Point
Operating System: Red Hat 6.2 (Linux kernel v2.4.10)
Case type: Zeroller model 107ZRX
Case size: 21" x 13" x 8.6"
For more information contact: firstname.lastname@example.org