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I'm building a render farm and wanted to use it like a little server for my home.

The main question is: What is better? Install ubuntu server and then install the desktop from apt-get to get an interface or install the desktop edition and then install mysl, php and others?

Since the desktop edition has more latency since the 250 interrupts in the kernel and the server edition has only 100 interrupts in the kernel.

The server kernel is set to a timer interrupt rate of 100 Hz (CONFIG_HZ=100, CONFIG_HZ_100=y), which means it accepts 100 interrupts per second. Another way to think of this is the kernel looks up and peers around 100 times per second for something to do. The desktop kernel is set to 250 Hz — lower numbers equal lower overhead and higher latency; higher numbers equal higher overhead and lower latency. Higher numbers generally mean the system feels more responsive, at the price of higher CPU usage. Some processes require more interrupts; for example, video processing and VoIP servers need 1000 Hz. If you need to change the Hz value it requires a kernel re-compile.

More info: The render farm consist in multiple machines. The a master node with hard drive and the other nodes will boot using lan (PXE).

Have in mind that the main archieve is build a render farm.

Thanks!

Source: http://www.serverwatch.com/tutorials/article.php/3715071/Ubuntu-Server--Kernel-Configuration-Considerations.htm

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Are we talking about a single machine or multiple machines? –  John Siu Jan 10 '13 at 1:44
    
Multiple machines. The master with hdd and the other nodes booting from lan with PXE. –  Sein Oxygen Jan 10 '13 at 12:03
    
I would go for "Install ubuntu server and then install the desktop from apt-get", also if you want to replicate configurations through several machines take a look at puppet linux –  LnxSlck Jan 17 '13 at 11:22
    
    
@EliahKagan This question doesn't have anything to do with that. –  Sein Oxygen Jan 30 '13 at 19:10

1 Answer 1

If you are building alot of machines are you better off starting with server and work your way up "for a render farm". Also kernels in the repository are quite interchangeable meaning you can use a server kernel on a desktop and vise verse.

Also it never good practice to optimize without taking measurements. I see you are planning ahead however until you have some baseline number you can not determine if latency is an issue or not.

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