The AnandTech Linux XBOX PC Experimentby Kristopher Kubicki on November 10, 2004 4:00 PM EST
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A Beowulf Cluster (Con't)Since building a cluster of Linux XBOXes was something that no one at Microsoft (probably) ever intended, there are some rough edges. The machines do not stack entirely well as the top of each XBOX is slightly curved. It would be asinine to use anything other than duct tape to correct this problem; although, heavy duty double-sided tape would probably make more sense if you were not trying to cover the air intakes on the sides of the XBOX.
Now that all of our machines have hard drive images and have been "installed" in our rack, we restarted dhcpd on the master machine and powered on the cluster. On the master XBOX, we can view the slaves connecting to the master and gaining an IP.
Configuring the cluster to do different things can be a little difficult; obviously, we do not want to log into each machine and execute each command by hand. Instead, we opted to use ssh to launch commands remotely. We wrote a simple script below named cluster_control.sh:
#!/bin/bash for i in 192.168.1.11 192.168.1.12 192.168.1.13 ...; do ssh root@$i $@ end
Since we do not want to enter our password every time we run a command, we wrote another script to set up our public keys and allow each slave machine on the cluster to authenticate via authorized keys instead of a password.
#!/bin/bash ssh-keygen - t rsa for i in 192.168.1.11 192.168.1.12 192.168.1.13 ...; do scp ~/.ssh/id_rsa.pub root@$i:~/.ssh/authorized_keys end
Now we can run single line commands via our cluster_control.sh script. Given a little more time, we could create something a little more robust, but we are just trying to launch some benchmarks. You'll notice that we are just logging in as root and ssh'ing around with no regard for what programs we are running as root. Security is not an issue here because our cluster network is physically removed from all other networks. However, if this were a real cluster, we would take more drastic measures of locking the machines down. We have just set up a very basic Beowulf Cluster made out of eight XBOXes.