Yes, we’re doing it. We’re building (what seems to be) the first distributed Raspberry Pi 2 cloud!
A look back and then a look ahead.
Hi, I’m Jim. I’m going to be running this blog for the next 10 weeks, and it’s going to be an exciting time. A lot has changed since we last posted here, in 2013. A wealth of related projects have been started and finished, papers released and cited. Here’s a selection of those which we thought noteworthy.
- Southampton University built their own Raspberry Pi cloud, as did GCHQ. An honourable mention goes to the Free University of Bolzano who have built a 300 Pi mega cloud, and dubbed it Bobo.
- After testing 10 different arm boards, Cloutier at al. found the Pi was the best for cloud design.
- Kaup et al. Measured and modelled the power consumption of the Pi.
- Ali Anwar et al. Found that micro server cloud supporting Hadoop applications are more efficient than traditional servers.
- A loose interpretation of our Raspberry Pi Cloud was used for an investigation into big data in tourism by d’Amore et al.
- Cascell et al. set out the need for further development of personal private clouds.
- Walter et al. used the Pi for hardware simulation, albeit in a very different context.
- A Raspberry Pi Cloud not unlike our own was used for high performance computing education by Pfalzgraf et al.
In the intervening time, the Pi 2 has also been released. The Pi 2 has a much faster armv7 processor and 1GB RAM. While it’s still far from competing with a desktop PC, it’s a massive improvement from the Pi 1. Because of this, we’ve decided to build and benchmark the second iteration of our favourite cloud. Development has just started, and I will be posting weekly updates. We haven’t settled on a stack yet, but we’re definitely going to be using Docker. We’ll be testing the following distributions:
- Arch Linux | Arm for the Pi 2
- Ubuntu Mate for the Pi 2
- Debian armhf
If you have any suggestions for other distributions, please let us know in the comments. Any chosen distro will need to take full advantage of the Pi 2’s architecture, and supporting Docker out of the box even better (but I don’t mind compiling a kernel or two). If you check back next week I will hopefully have set up and benchmarked all of these, each on a single Pi. This is a great project and once completed it will be a massively useful tool for research and education.
We’re also resurrecting our twitter account, so follow us on that if you haven’t already: @glasgowpicloud.
See you next week.