Friday, 18 January, 2002

My Own Super Computer

The super computer is running.  This evening, with the help of the company's CTO, I got the first two machines configured and cooperating and rendered the skyvase benchmark image using the parallel version of the Persistence of Vision Raytracer (Pov-ray).  As I said on Wednesday, I'm not setting any speed records.  It took these two machines a minute and 24 seconds to render the image.  I was in a hurry so I didn't run the test with the 333 alone to get a baseline for comparison.  Maybe I'll do that over the weekend.  I've configured the cluster so that I can VPN into the company network and then telnet to the host machine.  I don't have to be at the office in order to play with my cluster.

I couldn't have done things this quickly without the information found on thePondermatic page.  The step-by-step instructions, although somewhat dated and not perfect, saved me a lot of time getting and installing PVM and Pov-ray.  I'm in the process of putting together a single archive that contains everything required to build the raytracer.  Not only will this make it easier for me to install on my six remaining machines, but perhaps it'll help somebody else get things up and running quickly.  When I have it all together I'll post it on my downloads page.  Or perhaps I'll create a Beowulf page of my own.