Little-Fe PPC

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This is page contains information about the 4 node PPC (Pegasos) version of Little-Fe.

This version of Little-Fe PPC is based on a Debian GNU/Linux installation. It employs UnionFS to facilitate consolidation of system and cluster software on a single hard drive (attached to lf0). All other nodes netboot from the main image by masking the server-specific files with a lightweight overlay.

  • lf0 can be found at

Documentation and bug reporting

We are documenting the production of Little-Fe in two ways: First, bugs are filed in bugzilla (and hopefully fixed). Second, we're putting flesh on a set of instructions to build a replica of the original Little-Fe PPC. The latter is probably (but not necessarily) based on the former. The distinction is mainly that Bugzilla will show how things were done wrong, while the wiki-based instructions will show how to do things right the first time.

Adding/Setting up a new node in the Debian Unified Root

These are current as of May 19, 2006.

Server Configuration

  • add MAC addresses for the 100Mbit and Gbit network interfaces to /etc/dhcp3/dhcpd.conf
  • restart dhcp with /etc/init.d/dhcp3-server restart

Client Firmware

These are the current client firmware settings necessary to boot lf[1-n] via the Debian unified root setup. These must be set on every single client node in order to netboot successfully. If they are not there already, add or correct the following lines in nvedit:

setenv boot-device eth:dhcp,,,
setenv boot-file vmlinuz- init=/linuxrc root=/dev/nfs ip=dhcp console=ttyS1,115200n1

After this is setup, type setenv auto-boot? true at the main firmware prompt (not in nvedit). Reboot to read in the new environment variables or set them manually and then type boot.

Creating a new Little-Fe PPC

Follow the instructions on the Diskless Cluster Setup page.

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