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OpenVMS Hobbyist Program | Hobbyists and OpenVMS | How I Use OpenVMS
Author Some questions about clustering
commodorejohn
Member

Posts: 9
Joined: 19.11.12
Posted on November 30 2014 15:59
I recently acquired a MicroVAX 3100/90, my second VAX system. Since I now have two VAXen, I thought it might be interesting to try setting up a little two-machine VMS cluster, particularly since both of my systems complement the shortcomings of each other (the 3100/90 is about twice as fast as the 4000/60 by the benchmarks I've seen, while the 4000/60 has a video card and a bigger, faster hard drive.) But I don't actually know that much about VMS clusters aside from that they exist. I'm currently looking through some of the documentation, but I figure it can't hurt to ask some of the basic questions I have:

* I know that a VMS cluster consists of separate instances of the operating system running on separate machines. To what extent can they share a workload, aside from sharing disk storage? Can VMS, say, assign processes launched from one machine to run on another? Can it do so automatically based on some criteria (for example, launching compiles on the faster machine,) or does it have to be specified?
* I know X Windows was designed for this from the start, so I assume it should be possible to run DECWindows programs on the 3100/90 and have them display on the 4000/60?
* On a tangentially-related note, is it possible to set up any kind of RAID-style disk striping/mirroring? The 3100/90 has four rather pokey 406MB hard drives, and I don't have the play budget to replace them with something newer, but striping data two or four ways across them should get the throughput up a bit.
Edited by commodorejohn on November 30 2014 16:00
Author RE: Some questions about clustering
Bruce Claremont
Member

Posts: 500
Joined: 07.01.10
Posted on December 01 2014 02:13
You have lots of reading to do. smiley

- To what extent can they share a workload, aside from sharing disk storage?

If using a cluster alias, VMS can be configured to workload balance.

- Can VMS, say, assign processes launched from one machine to run on another?

Only on process launch, not in flight.

- Can it do so automatically based on some criteria (for example, launching compiles on the faster machine,) or does it have to be specified?

Use batch queues assigned to specific nodes for this type of thing.

- On a tangentially-related note, is it possible to set up any kind of RAID-style disk striping/mirroring?

RAID/Striping would be hardware dependent. You can shadow/mirror using VMS Shadow sets.
Author RE: Some questions about clustering
commodorejohn
Member

Posts: 9
Joined: 19.11.12
Posted on December 01 2014 07:19
Only on process launch, not in flight.

Plenty good enough for my purposes (though I'd like to see the system that can move running processes across machines!) Mainly it would just be useful to be have intensive stuff like Mosaic or VAX C run on the 3100, since it's so much faster.

RAID/Striping would be hardware dependent. You can shadow/mirror using VMS Shadow sets.

So it looks from the overview like shadowing provides redundancy, but doesn't really improve read performance? I suppose that could be useful (the drives in the 3100 are kind of old, so redundancy for the boot volume could be nice, and I don't plan on doing a lot of access to them since I've got a newer, zippier drive in the 4000.)

(Speaking of sharing storage access, I see that I can set up a multiple-host SCSI connection for this purpose - I'm assuming that the drives in both systems have to have unique SCSI IDs? What about the host controllers? Can that be set from the firmware prompt?)
Edited by commodorejohn on December 01 2014 07:25
Author RE: Some questions about clustering
Bruce Claremont
Member

Posts: 500
Joined: 07.01.10
Posted on December 02 2014 01:42
You need specific hard to set up a DSSI shared SCSI cluster. I believe you will be limited to a network cluster with your present hardware. You could easily build and cluster in a Simh virtual VAX for faster and larger storage.

Shadowing helps performance in that in provides multiple spindles to read/write data.
Author RE: Some questions about clustering
malmberg
Moderator

Posts: 461
Joined: 15.04.08
Posted on December 02 2014 03:41
As far as I know, there are no supported multiple host SCSI configurations for VAX.

Shadowing may speed up reading as the first read to actually complete completes the I/O. Shadowing slows down writes as both writes must complete to complete the I/O.

I have not yet tested this, but have considered setting up a SimH/VAX system to be dedicated as a cluster node only to LAVC serve disks to VMS clusters. For the older VAXen, the 10 Mb 1/2 duplex speed would be the main limitation.
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LouF91
April 05 2018
ah maybe they love that!

malmberg
March 24 2018
Probably. More people hang out on the comp.os.vms newsgroup.

vaxpert
March 23 2018
I have a PE42A and other Alpha system stuff for sale. I'm in So California. Any interest out there?

goodbyespy
February 27 2018
To Prohorenko. Please, visit group OpenVMS in the ok.ru

peteherrera
February 24 2018
How much does it cost to buy a complete OpenVMS hardcopy documentation set of the latest version

prohorenko
February 17 2018
Please help to obtain the license on OpenVMS

malmberg
December 12 2017
HPE only makes the most current version of OpenVMS Alpha / IA64 /VAX available to hobbyists. When I had access to the Alliance 1 program it was the same. No public downloads are allowed by HPE.

nmbonao
December 08 2017
Is anybody knows OpenVMS 8.2 version downloadable version? or CD copy? Thank you very much

aarommes
December 02 2017
Bitcoin and Blockchain enthusiasts ( plus distributed computing ) please connec / reply: http://www.openvmshobbyis
t.com/forum/viewthread.ph
p?forum_id=130&thread_id=
2991


malmberg
September 10 2017
https://sourceforge.net/p
/vms-ports/wiki/VMSInstal
lation/ For the most part just use VMS 6.1 media instead of 7.3. But why run the older release?


DoeveR
August 07 2017
Where can I find the write up on running VMS 6.1 using the simh emulator?

Bart
March 20 2017
Happy to have found my password again!

pintero
March 16 2017
peteherrera. Agreed.

peteherrera
March 04 2017
It would be nice to be able to buy the lastest hardcopy full OpenVMS docset at a very reduced price through the Hobbyist program. smiley

malmberg
February 05 2017
Decus > Connect > Encompass<Country>

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