Linux Magazine: Using MOSIX

“Parallel computing can solve large problems more quickly
because it focuses the processing power of many computers working
in tandem (called a cluster) on a single task. A master node in the
cluster breaks the problem into discrete parts, and passes tasks
and computational data to slave nodes. The master node receives
results from the slave nodes and generates a final answer.
Coordination of the entire process is controlled with
message-passing APIs.

“However, these message-passing APIs have some significant
drawbacks. Most algorithms require considerable design and
modifications to optimize them for parallel computing. And
different processor speeds of various nodes in the cluster can also
make it difficult to re-code an algorithm: if the slowest node
causes others to wait for it to complete its portion of an
algorithm, then the cluster is not being optimally utilized.

“Fortunately, there’s another way to allocate tasks in a cluster
of disparate processors that does not require you to rethink your
algorithms. It’s called MOSIX (http://www.mosix.com/), the
Multicomputer Operating System for UnIX. It was developed by
Professor Amnon Barak and collaborators at the Hebrew University of
Jerusalem in Israel…”


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