Sun/IRAF Site Manager's Guide

Sun/IRAF Site Manager's Guide

6.3. Diskless nodes

For an application such as programming or word processing, a diskless node connected to a large file server is a cost effective approach delivering good performance. Some local disk for boot, swap, and local file storage is desirable but not essential. For most IRAF applications however, where serious image processing is planned, one is inevitably going to want to run large batch image processing jobs directly on the server, implying that a compute rather than file server is what is needed (i.e., one will want to avoid heavy NFS loading on the server). A diskless node is still viable, but one will want to run jobs which involve heavy disk i/o directly on the server, reserving the workstation for the interactive things, e.g., graphics and image display, and compute bound image analysis tasks. Small SCSI disks are getting cheap enough that almost any color workstation equipped with say, 12-16 Mb of memory, probably warrants several Mb of local disk for server independence, swap, and local file storage.