Affordable and Energy-Efficient Cloud Computing Clusters: The Bolzano Raspberry Pi Cloud Cluster Experiment
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We present our ongoing work building a Raspberry Pi cluster consisting of 300 nodes. The unique characteristics of this single board computer pose several challenges, but also offer a number of interesting opportunities. On the one hand, a single Raspberry Pi can be purchased cheaply and has a low power consumption, which makes it possible to create an affordable and energy-efficient cluster. On the other hand, it lacks in computing power, which makes it difficult to run computationally intensive software on it. Nevertheless, by combining a large number of Raspberries into a cluster, this drawback can be (partially) offset. Here we report on the first important steps of creating our cluster: how to set up and configure the hardware and the system software, and how to monitor and maintain the system. We also discuss potential use cases for our cluster, the two most important being an inexpensive and green test bed for cloud computing research and a robust and mobile data center for operating in adverse environments. © 2013 IEEE.
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