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The Register: The VAX of Life: Sun's cluster guru talks Full Moon

Dec 07, 2000, 18:01 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Andrew Orlowski)

"Khalidi wanted to clear up the impression that the new offering introduces a new proprietary cluster file system of Sun's own making. It doesn't. Khalidi himself had hinted at this possibility in recent talks, such as this one: "next-generation clusters could rely on a Cluster File System (CFS) to enable global access to all files, devices and network resources in the system, and create a full single-system image."

"But that isn't the case. "That was an explicit design decision. The last thing we want to do is invent a new proprietary file system. So if something becomes important - like the new Linux file systems - we can plug it in." Sun Clusters 3.0 indeed employs a "Global File Service", but that boils down to using Solaris' native file system and if you want it - and if you use disks on non-Solaris systems, you almost certainly will - Veritas VxFS. He left door open for Linux file systems to plug-in to Full Moon in the future."

"Nor does Sun Clusters mirror processes in the manner of Himalaya (formerly Tandem) NSC machines. Instead, the system logs file behaviour: open, read, write and sync calls. ... That's just one of several fashionable, or once-fashionable approaches to clusters that the Full Moon team was happy to trample in the design work. Another being "process migration", an approach adopted by for example the MOSIX Linux cluster project, which in the event of a node failure, fails over individual processes."

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