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MADMAN (the ultimate ghetto build)

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by minx, Jun 15, 2014.

  1. minx

    minx

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    Hi.

    A long time ago (~5 years), I made a cluster of PCs called "Ghetto Cluster". 12 old Windows-PCs featuring Intel P4s.

    It worked perfectly and I was very happy, but there was a problem. About one month ago I had to move out of my (big) lab ( :( ). The Ghetto Cluster takes very much space (PCs, cables, switches, screens etc.) and therefore a new solution had to be created.

    I've already posted a picture of the debug PC for the Cluster in the Ghetto Mods thread here, where you can see my old lab in the background. You can also spot a cart, on which the PC rests.

    My plan is: Build the whole Cluster INSIDE of the cart. So it will be portable and I can push it around. At the moment I came up with this idea, I didn't realize how insane it was ;-)

    1. The old lab (Cleaning & Packing)

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    So as I was playing around with some settings and cleaning the lab, I decided it was time to take a break and play some games on my phone, but appearently my phone didn't like me, so this happened:
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    F* it. Back to work...

    Everything packed together:
    [​IMG]

    2. The actual build

    I'm really sorry, but I don't have as many pictures as I'd like to. So i started working, disassembling the cart, disassembling all PCs. I've figured out that only 8 PCs are gonna fit in the cart. 1 PC = 1 MoBo+1PSU(stripped)+1HDD.

    I took all the internals and ziptied (yes, the whole thing is held together by zipties!) them into place. No srews were harmed during the process. I've drilled holes in the wooden boards as mounting points for the zipties. The first 4 PSUs were glued into place:

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    Beautiful those zipties! It still looks quite clean, but that will change in a moment.

    Now it was time to add the remaining PSUs and do all the cable management (means: zipties). I've also added the 16port switch, all ethernet cables and the first HDDs.

    Note: This is not, by any means, a proper way to store HDDs. You should never ever do this with any valueable hardware! (unless you use enough zipties :p ).

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    Time for some testing! Great, all HDDs and PCs are working fine, airflow is still kinda possible and the noise is reasonable. Time to add the debug screen. For this I'll use zipties again. That's right, I've ziptied a LCD monitor to this cart and fixated it by using old spare metal parts from the former PC cases. Beware of the ziptie monster:

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    Instead of painting anything, I used black insulating tape:

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    More improper HDD mounting (WD400 from 2002, 40GB):
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    Three other metal PC case back parts and one spare metal HDD cage act as a place to keep the debug keyboard. Its covered in duct tape, because ... duct tape (no but seriously, those metal parts have sharp edges, the tape really helps there):
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    By the way: Old PC speakers (Beepers) are perfect for storing srews:
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    So far, so good:
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    This is how the carts look atm:
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    That's it for today. I'll come back from time to time to post updates about this build. If you have any questions, please leave them here.
    So long! ;-)

    PS: Thanks SAMSUNG for sending me this much gummy bears with every test unit that I get from you ;)

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  2. hat

    hat Maximum Overclocker

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    What did you use this for?
     
    Crunching for Team TPU
  3. Guitarrassdeamor

    Guitarrassdeamor

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    Also curious...and this is pretty awesome.
     
  4. minx

    minx

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    Well, it all started back in 2012, when I worked at the university in the bioinformatics department. It was fun, I had no school one day every week and I did improve my programming skills alot. Eventually I've created a software for creating such ghetto clusters (hot swap whole PCs while loosing no data at all). I'll continue this development.

    Due to my job, I have to test our software on all the different Windows OS'. I'm going to install Win ME (people are still using it) to Win 8.1 on the clients and try to develop an automated testing suite. (Workflow: Compile->Upload->Coffee->Results).
     

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