"Cluster computing has made significant progress since its
inception in the early 90s. The trend to use PC clusters to achieve
supercomputing speed with an affordable budget has accelerated with
the rising use of GNU/Linux. The easy availability of inexpensive
hardware (processors, memory, hard disks, Ethernet cards) combined
with open source software quickly drove people to adopt Linux-based
"This blurring of terminology raises the question: 'Do people
who want to build a cluster have to use Linux?' (Perhaps the heart
of that question, and the more practical point, is 'We have bunch
of idle PCs using Windows. Do we need to migrate them all into
Linux just to borrow their CPU cycles?')..."
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