[Linux-cluster] New (small) cluster; What filesystem? GFS?

Elmar Pruesse elmar at pruesse.net
Sat Dec 3 22:49:15 UTC 2005


We're getting a new cluster for Christmas this year, and I am wondering
whether there are better options than the nfs-server setup used on our
old one. Unfortunately we don't have any people who have had the chance
to try things out, and we won't have much time either.

I'd really appreciate some comments on what would make sense for us and
what would not. (I did read up some, but everyone claims to be best...)

We've got:
Five nodes 16GB/dual 275 opteron, one 32GB DB-host and one 8GB
fileserver. The latter two have external SCSI-Raids. All are
interconnected via Infiniband. We will expand to 12 or 16 nodes with the
next round of money.

The old cluster (as provided by our IBM vendor) uses a NFS-server
connected to a fibre-channel raid. Filesystem performance is a
[expletive deleted] major problem.

We will use the cluster for serveral different bioinformatics tools,
some of which I've been told produce directories with many thousands of

Does iSCSI+GFS make sense? And more so than NFS? Would you route it via
the Infiniband network or via GbE? How about Lustre, PVFS2, OCFS?


ps: Please do tell me the combination of hardware makes at least a
little sense. The infiniband was something of an afterthought, since it
was unexpectetly cheap.

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