Raspberry Pi VAXcluster: Software Mania

Everything pretty-much for the cluster project has moved over to the software side. I have made several significant progress steps:

  • I cracked ipnat, which I am using on the Intel routing to route traffic between the internal 10.0.0.x network and the outside world (via the external LAN port). This means I can now assign TCP ports on the external interface to internal addresses to forward things like ssh and telnet access straight to the outside world. I couldn’t have got my head around it without the excellent Firewall Builder (http://www.fwbuilder.org/), whioch priovides a handy GUI interface to build your IPFilter and IPNAT rules in.
  • I have installed and partly configured OpenVMS 7.3 on the first (Intel) node. It’s s step forward, at least.
  • I have begun installing and configuring OpenVMS 7.3 on the second (RaspberryPi) node.
  • I installed and setup DNSmasq on the Intel routing node so that the cluster’s DNS is not dependant on an outside DNS server. DNSmasq is a lighter weight and easier to configure solution than a BIND server and it’s setup alters dynamically depending on the operating system’s standard resolv.conf and hosts configuration.

Overall things are progressing well now I have the hardware settled down. The only niggling issues is one of the Raspberry Pi boards may have a flakey ethernet interface. I have experienced occasional network interface black-outs, especially when copying files to and from the board’s onboard storage. Ther are 2 possible explanations, one is the board isn’t quite getting enough power, the other is the LAN interface has some kind of fault which makes it flake out under heavy load. I intend to swap the board for a different one (as I have a spare) and see if that solves the issue.

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