Playstation 2 Clusters

Apr 04 2006

I’m getting lots of messages (email, IM, sms, etc…) regarding my new grid hosting company, so I decided to post some facts:

Fact #1:

Clustering on PS2’s is very real, in fact, the NCSA has constructed a PlayStation 2 Linux cluster as a test bench for scientific computation.

From PlayStation 2: Computational Cluster:

The cluster consists of 65 compute nodes, 4 user login and development nodes, and 1 prototype node for software installation tests. All the nodes run the Sony Linux distribution for PlayStation 2. The compute nodes fill a 24-inch rack; 5 shelves at 13 per shelf

The Sony Linux kit (for PlayStation 2) includes a full Linux operating system. This distribution uses Linux 2.2.1 ported to the PlayStation’s Emotion Engine CPU, and is based on an earlier version of Red Hat Linux for PC’s. The distribution includes development tools that you would expect; libraries, editors, compilers and debuggers that you’d find in any Linux distribution. The kit also includes software tools that provide hooks into the PlayStation 2 specific hardware.

Fact #2:

Building a computational cluster using PS2’s, with the help of the people I met at SC’05, is absolutely something I would try to do. And apparently – none of my friends would ever be suprised if they heard I had.

Fact #3:

The entry was posted on April 1st – aka, April Fool’s day. πŸ™‚

So:

Thank you for all the positive feedback and well wishes, but I’m not insane enough to try to build a company selling computational time on video gaming consoles. πŸ™‚

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