Author Topic: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?  (Read 1446 times)

srcuervo

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile
Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« on: November 29, 2009, 12:38:40 pm »
Hi
Ive been planning my LinuxMCE installation for a while. I just got a couple of old servers, two dual P3 700mhz.

Now I know they aint much... by themselves.
The p3s are easily upgradable to dual 1Ghz p3(5bucks a piece on ebay hehe). I read in the wiki that a 733mhz p3 wouldnt be enough to watch a live feed but a 800mhz would, so Im guessing the upgrade to 1Ghz is a must.
So that would mean a cluster of two servers running a total of 4 p3 1Ghz processors.
Now that sounds more like something that could handle LinuxMCE... right? Im planning on setting up a core and two media directors only.
So back to the main question, is it possible to install LinuxMCE on a cluster? If so do you think I should be fine with my servers or should I buy a couple of cheap P4 xeon servers from ebay just to make sure it works fine?

Thanks.

colinjones

  • Alumni
  • LinuxMCE God
  • *
  • Posts: 3003
    • View Profile
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2009, 01:25:12 pm »
No it is not.

Using P3s is not realistic, its 10 year old technology

tkmedia

  • wants to work for LinuxMCE
  • **
  • Posts: 937
    • View Profile
    • LMCECompatible
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2009, 09:32:31 pm »
Save the electricity for a couple of months that your p3 cluster would use and buy yourself new PC.




Tim
My Setup http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/User:Tkmedia

For LinuxMce compatible  systems and accessories
http://lmcecompatible.com/

srcuervo

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2009, 11:42:00 am »
Ok ok I get it no P3.

Still. clustering? Is it a definite no? or just uncharted territory?

I found a cheap IBM blade server with 14 blades each with 2GB of ram and two 3GHz Xeon processors. Thats a total of 28GB of ram and 28 3Ghz xeon processors in a cluster. I bet that would be enough... right?

So beowulf anyone?

tschak909

  • LinuxMCE God
  • ****
  • Posts: 5501
  • DOES work for LinuxMCE.
    • View Profile
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2009, 02:26:19 pm »
as always, we accept patches.

:)

wierdbeard65

  • Guru
  • ****
  • Posts: 449
    • View Profile
    • My Quest
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2009, 02:41:29 pm »
I know Myth is able to offload some of it's processing to other "back ends". This can be recording, or stuff like commercial detection. Not sure if there is any mileage in that...

You could always install your blade server, nominate one as the core and have all the others as Media Directors. Connect your capture cards to these and you could recoard loads of off-air stuff.

Certainly, I would imagine you would be able to make something useful out of all that kit, whether it would truly be a core spread over 14 blades though.....
Paul
If you have the time to help, please see where I have got to at: http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/User:Wierdbeard65

merkur2k

  • Addicted
  • *
  • Posts: 513
    • View Profile
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2009, 04:51:25 pm »
there are no distributed video decoding applications that i know of, which is mostly what you need the power for.

srcuervo

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2009, 12:34:19 am »
Ok so in short
although setting up a cluster is viable it would only work for distributed tasks and not distributed processes. So I would still need one good server for video decoding and then I can set up servers for database etc so that the main powerhouse, ie the video decoding server, doesnt go into other little tasks. Im guessing two servers is more than enough and one has to be as powerful as possible. Am I right?

Im going to check what sort of servers I can get, maybe Ill just end up sticking to one.

Thanks guys.

tschak909

  • LinuxMCE God
  • ****
  • Posts: 5501
  • DOES work for LinuxMCE.
    • View Profile
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2009, 12:39:50 am »
Dude,

are you brain damaged?

Seriously?

It should be made perfectly clear, that you're on your own, that you would have to significantly patch the system to support your configuration.

Which

would be great, but you don't strike me as the "I'll code it up" type.

-Thom

trentend

  • Veteran
  • ***
  • Posts: 117
    • View Profile
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2009, 12:48:15 am »
It's also worth bearing in mind that there is a massive advantage in a single, low power, core with distributed on-demand media driectors.  Running the whole thing centrally 24/7 would consume a lot of resources and generate a lot of heat.

merkur2k

  • Addicted
  • *
  • Posts: 513
    • View Profile
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2009, 03:50:58 am »
as stated, its the video decoding that takes the majority of the power. everything else (database, etc) really has no impact. anything made in the last couple years has plenty enough power to do everything, and you can get away with even less if you offload the video decoding to the gpu (using vdpau with nvidia).
save your pennies and just do it right.

srcuervo

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2009, 09:30:35 am »
Dude,

are you brain damaged?

Seriously?

It should be made perfectly clear, that you're on your own, that you would have to significantly patch the system to support your configuration.

Which

would be great, but you don't strike me as the "I'll code it up" type.

-Thom

No, Im not brain damaged. Quite the contrary, Im a member of Mensa.

Im sorry if you feel that you have the answer to everything to the point that if you dont means such answers dont exist. If you dont know the answer to my questions then you dont have to reply to them. Relax, we are all human here, no one has all the answers.

I know Im mostly on my own and I am trying to figure out if developing a patch for distributing some tasks is even worth it. Obviously a beowulf style cluster is out of the question but a distributed one is easier to achieve.

I have by now installed 3 beowulf clusters each between 20 and 30 nodes and 6 distributed task clusters each of an average of 35 nodes for use as VoIP PBX servers; Im also a game programmer.

It's also worth bearing in mind that there is a massive advantage in a single, low power, core with distributed on-demand media driectors.  Running the whole thing centrally 24/7 would consume a lot of resources and generate a lot of heat.

I agree, the purpose was never to eliminate the media directors but to distribute the tasks of the core. But merkur2k is right, the difference is probably meaningless.

as stated, its the video decoding that takes the majority of the power. everything else (database, etc) really has no impact. anything made in the last couple years has plenty enough power to do everything, and you can get away with even less if you offload the video decoding to the gpu (using vdpau with nvidia).
save your pennies and just do it right.

Yea Im sticking to a basic setup.

But still if video decoding is the task that takes the most load wouldnt it be better to leave it to the main processor? Or do you mean I should just buy a decent computer and a really really powerful video card to take the load of video decoding?

Which brings me to another question.

Does the video card in the core take all the load and I should just invest in basic ones for the media directors or should I just invest in all around good ones?

Thanks guys.

wierdbeard65

  • Guru
  • ****
  • Posts: 449
    • View Profile
    • My Quest
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #12 on: December 02, 2009, 11:40:41 am »
No, Im not brain damaged. Quite the contrary, Im a member of Mensa.

Im sorry if you feel that you have the answer to everything to the point that if you dont means such answers dont exist. If you dont know the answer to my questions then you dont have to reply to them. Relax, we are all human here, no one has all the answers.
Thom can get very grumpy when people ask questions about heavily modifying MCE. Don't take it personally! FWIW, I agree with him, why make things difficult for yourself?
But still if video decoding is the task that takes the most load wouldnt it be better to leave it to the main processor? Or do you mean I should just buy a decent computer and a really really powerful video card to take the load of video decoding?

Which brings me to another question.

Does the video card in the core take all the load and I should just invest in basic ones for the media directors or should I just invest in all around good ones?
There are two parts to this. Taking the live feed and turning into a file for storage (or into a stream over the network) and taking that file (/stream) and displaying it.

AFAIK, neither has anything to do with the video card on your core. The first is all about the capture card you use. The latter is all about the video card on your MD (and core if it's a hybrid). You can get away with a much lower powered CPU here if you take advantage of the card's features like vdpau.

HTH (I'm sure others will correct my analysis of vdpau if I have it wrong!)
Paul
If you have the time to help, please see where I have got to at: http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/User:Wierdbeard65

totallymaxed

  • LinuxMCE God
  • ****
  • Posts: 4456
  • Smart Home Consulting
    • View Profile
    • Dianemo - at home with technology
Re: Is it possible to install Linux MCE in a Cluster?
« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2009, 12:16:59 pm »
Dude,

are you brain damaged?

Seriously?

It should be made perfectly clear, that you're on your own, that you would have to significantly patch the system to support your configuration.

Which

would be great, but you don't strike me as the "I'll code it up" type.

-Thom

No, Im not brain damaged. Quite the contrary, Im a member of Mensa.

Im sorry if you feel that you have the answer to everything to the point that if you dont means such answers dont exist. If you dont know the answer to my questions then you dont have to reply to them. Relax, we are all human here, no one has all the answers.

I know Im mostly on my own and I am trying to figure out if developing a patch for distributing some tasks is even worth it. Obviously a beowulf style cluster is out of the question but a distributed one is easier to achieve.

I have by now installed 3 beowulf clusters each between 20 and 30 nodes and 6 distributed task clusters each of an average of 35 nodes for use as VoIP PBX servers; Im also a game programmer.

It's also worth bearing in mind that there is a massive advantage in a single, low power, core with distributed on-demand media driectors.  Running the whole thing centrally 24/7 would consume a lot of resources and generate a lot of heat.

I agree, the purpose was never to eliminate the media directors but to distribute the tasks of the core. But merkur2k is right, the difference is probably meaningless.

as stated, its the video decoding that takes the majority of the power. everything else (database, etc) really has no impact. anything made in the last couple years has plenty enough power to do everything, and you can get away with even less if you offload the video decoding to the gpu (using vdpau with nvidia).
save your pennies and just do it right.

Yea Im sticking to a basic setup.

But still if video decoding is the task that takes the most load wouldnt it be better to leave it to the main processor? Or do you mean I should just buy a decent computer and a really really powerful video card to take the load of video decoding?

Which brings me to another question.

Does the video card in the core take all the load and I should just invest in basic ones for the media directors or should I just invest in all around good ones?

Thanks guys.

Welcome to the Forum :-)

The Core can have a good quality nVidia GPU installed if you plan to use it as a hybrid ie watch content on it as well... or you can use a lesser GPU if your not planning to use the Core for Media playback ie its sitting in a rack...out of site.

The Media Directors (MD's) are the devices that really need the power and of a nVidia onboard GPU or on-card GPU as it is these that are connected to and drive the displays around your house and are therefore streaming TV, DVD's, Music etc. MD's can be distributed around the house and be located behind or near each TV or can be located centrally in a rack with the Core and a RAIDED NAS (you know all about that clearly!).

If you have more questions post them here...this is a big complex system and it does take a while to build a mental picture of how all of the component parts relate to one another.

All the best

Andrew

Andy Herron,
Convergent Home Technologies Ltd
United Kingdom

Read My Blog; http://ellipticalcurve.com

Contact me for Smart Home consulting advice here;
@herron on Twitter, totallymaxed+consulting@gmail.com via email or PM me here.

Get a Dianemo S License: http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=8880.0
iOS Orbiter: http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Dianemo_iOS_Orbiter
Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dianemo-Home-Automation/226019387454465

Sales & Info:
http://www.dianemo.co.uk