Gaël Duval and Mike Angelo Discuss Mandrake Business Products and Finances
MandrakeSoft Adds MandrakeClustering to Its Business and Enterprise Products Lineup
Business Products Helping MandrakeSoft Financial Position
Mike Angelo -- 27 June 2003 (C) (Updated 28 June2003)
Mandrake Clustering, released 24 June, is an easy-to-use high-performance computing solution for Pentium & Opteron processors. It runs on all Pentium-compatible processors including Pentium, P2, P3, P4, AMD K6 AMD Duron and AMD Athalon processors. Gaël Duval, Co-Founder MandrakeSoft.
Built on top of Mandrake Linux 9.1 and the 2.4.19 Linux kernel, MandrakeClustering is a graphical-desktop, cluster-computing solution.
According to the MandrakeSoft Web Site, MandrakeClustering is a unique combination of the best free-software cluster-oriented tools and MandrakeSoft's proven experience in design and accessibility to merge into an easy-to-use linux (sic) distribution for clusters. . . . Typical applications include: crash simulations, acoustics, seismic modeling, MonteCarlo simulations, risk analysis etc.
It is an established fact that clusters of machines can reach performance equivalent to supercomputers, doing so at costs that are an order of magnitude lower. (CLIC website.)
We asked Gaël Duval if MandrakeCluster is Mandrake 9.1 with some special configuration and administration tools to facilitate its deployment on a cluster of PCs over a network.
Gaël Duval: It's a special distribution with everything needed to build a cluster. Of course, several technologies (and base packages) are derived from the Mandrake Linux distribution, such as URPMI (in a parallelized version).
Some of the Clustering-related software packages that are part of MandrakeClustering include:
MandrakeClustering is exclusive to Mandrake, but built on the CLIC research project. The Clusterautosetup and parallel-URPMI configuration and software installation tools are exclusive to MandrakeClustering, according to Gaël Duval.
Gaël Duval: Clusterautosetup and Kadeploy are management tools . . . Clusterautosetup is a management tool to setup and retrieve information for client node. Ka-tools are management tools to boot and duplicate client nodes with PXE . . . [Ganglia is] a scalable distributed monitoring system for high-performance computing systems.
MozillaQuest Magazine: Mandrake Corporpate Server also has clustering. So why not just buy the Corporate Server instead of MandrakeClustering?
Gaël Duval: Mandrake Corporate Server is a comprehensive solution to build a server infrastructure. It can also be used to build a small clustering environment, but not something "big". MandrakeClustering is really the product designed to build a real cluster farm, with all the tools needed for that.
Mandrake Linux -- Products for Home, Office, and Enterprise
MandrakeClustering is MandrakeSoft's latest product addition aimed at the business side of being a Linux distribution provider. Other heavy-duty enterprise grade Mandrake products are Mandrake Linux Corporate Server 2.1 for AMD Opteron and Mandrake Linux Corporate Server 2.1.
MandrakeSoft also produces and distributes Mandrake Linux 9.1, which comes in a two-CD Standard ($40),a seven-CD PowerPack ($69), and an eight-CD plus one workstation-DVD ProSuite ($199) edition. The basic, core, version is available for free downloading.
The Mandrake Linux PowerPack and Standard editions are designed for individual users, and the ProSuite Edition is created for small and medium-sized enterprises. The February 2003 Corporate Server release announcement stated that Mandrake Linux Corporate Server 2.1 is a comprehensive and versatile Linux solution that provides large accounts with critical business server functions . . . The Corporate Server includes MandrakeClustering tools.
The AMD Opteron Corporate Server release announcement adds: Mandrake Corporate Server 2.1 for the AMD Opteron processor is aimed at businesses that require high-performance systems for intensive computing applications, especially in the field of critical server functions such as web-servers, database deployment (with MySQL-64), and application & file servers.
Interestingly, Gaël Duval and MandrakeSoft seem to be primarily interested in promoting the growth and spread of GNU/Linux by producing a top-notch, easy to use, desktop Linux distribution. They are doing a great job too.
Unfortunately there are business and financial realities of being a top-tier Linux distribution provider. That means adding products to the basic, free-download, version of a GNU/Linux product that will generate much needed revenue. The fortunate side to that is that in order to deal with those financial realities, MandrakeSoft is adding server and enterprise grade products and services to its offerings.
In part that means having some enterprise and server level products that can generate enterprise and server level revenues. It also means in part, selling services and support.
MandrakeClustering sells for $2,960. The Mandrake Corporate Server products run from about $749 to $1499.
For more information about MandrakeClustering please check the MandrakeClustering Press Release on page 2 and the links in the Resources section on page 2 also.
Mandrake Linux 9.1 is an easy-to-install and easy-to-use GNU/Linux operating system distribution. We have not completed our Mandrake Linux 9.1 testing yet. However so far, it seems to be even better than Mandrake Linux 9.0, which we gave very high marks.
Mandrake is one of the leading and most popular Linux OS distributions. MozillaQuest Magazine found Mandrake Linux 9.0 to be Desktop Magic You Can Use right out of the box.
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