[GE users] switching off nodes

Sebastian Stark stark at tuebingen.mpg.de
Thu Feb 10 17:57:51 GMT 2005

Has anyone ever done this?

I want to shut down idle nodes to save money. I don't see any problem from the 
technical side (buy power switches and make them configurable over the 
network or serial port) but I'm wondering what issues there could be with 

To decide wether some nodes should be shut down I would have to gather usage 
data and make the nodes power status dependent on acutal number of jobs 
waiting for resources or something like this. Has anyone ever thought this 
through a bit?

Issues I can think of are:

 - race conditions (systems decides to shut down node but between decision and 
shutdown a job slips in)

 - nodes get shut down based on wrong decisions by the system

 - waiting time until a node is booted (there should be hot spares...)

 - don't really shut them down but put them in acpi standby and use 
wake-on-lan to bring them back to life, should be reasonably fast.

Thanks for any input!


Sebastian Stark -- http://www.kyb.tuebingen.mpg.de/~stark
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics
Spemannstr. 38, 72076 Tuebingen
Phone: +49 7071 601 555 -- Fax: +49 7071 601 552

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