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Compute Server: new open source release

Posted by nidaley on May 3, 2006 at 1:40 PM PDT

Today, another early access version of Compute Server (version 0.2) was released at a new location in the recently formed Sun Grid Developer Community. Although it contains relatively minor feature enhancements, today's release contains a major enhancement in its licensing -- both binary and source code are now available under the Apache License, v2.0.

This is also the first source code release (it's a separate download). If you take a look at the source code, you'll notice that this release uses Jini(TM) and JavaSpaces(TM) Technologies under the covers to distribute task objects from a Compute Server job's master node to its many worker nodes provisioned on the Sun Grid Compute Utility. Jini and JavaSpaces are common technologies used to implement this distributed master-worker pattern (and here) -- likely because these technologies inherently enable scalability, fault tolerance, and dynamic discovery of the distributed components in the system.

Speaking of dynamic discovery, those of you familiar with Jini may notice a new service discovery format provider and Lookup Service locator mechanism in the source code.
These mechanisms are used with the shared NFS file system to assist with discovery and authentication of the Jini Lookup Service. The reason the file system is used to assist with service discovery, instead of multicast (the method typically used for dynamic discovery of Jini components in a system), is that multicast is not guaranteed to be available across all nodes on Sun Grid, whereas the shared NFS file system is guaranteed to be available to every node.

For a detailed list of changes between versions 0.1 and 0.2 of Compute Server, including changes to the programming model and the Netbeans plug-in, take a look at the documentation included in the release download file.

Lots more to come. Why not join the project, jump into the discussions on our users list and voice your ideas and requirements? And if you're at JavaOne, come check it out at the Advanced Sun Grid - Creating Applications for Horizontal Scale session!

The Final Word...

The best way to predict the future is to invent it.

- Alan Kay

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