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If a discussion about building a cluster consists of why, what, and how, we've covered only the first topic, why, by doing the following:

  • Defining the word cluster
  • Specifying some reasons that clusters are a good solution
  • Justifying Linux as the operating system of choice for a cluster

In some cases—if the software supports it—the clustered approach can save money and scale beyond the capabilities of large SMP systems. As the operating system of choice, Linux provides the freedom to choose among multiple vendors and multiple distributions (both free and supported), enabling you to craft the operating environment that you want for your cluster. What's not to like?

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