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I have 1 early gen x64 junk laptop, 2 midgrade x64 towers and 1 (what was 3.5 years ago) a highend x64 laptop. It still needs a lot of hardware ...
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  1. #1
    Linux User Steven_G's Avatar
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    Ideas for a cluster; input appreciated.


    I have 1 early gen x64 junk laptop, 2 midgrade x64 towers and 1 (what was 3.5 years ago) a highend x64 laptop.

    It still needs a lot of hardware TLC. I had to take the oldest laptop apart to clean it and regrease it.

    The tower upgrades and the networking stuff set me back about $400 US. It should come out nice once I feel like getting up and doing that much work.

    I'm trying to figure out what to do with it after it's built.

    If I can get everything to work I'll end up with 18 cores and 20GB RAM running through a highspeed switch with all system resources shared across the distributed units and a 2TB shared storage pool.

    I'm planning on using rocks cluster xenroll.

    Basic ideas for use:

    1) Set it up on my LAN, behind my adaptive firewall, as a virtualized test bed with GNS3 and with emulated switches to build a scale model of a large mixed corporate network.

    2) Same setup, except reachable from the outside world via VPN. Then build a thin client and remote in to both my cluster and my "real" machine which has an additional 8 cores and 8GB RAM and harnes their power anywhere I have a wifi connection.

    3) Set it up in the gateway's DMZ instead of on the LAN and still set it to only be accessible via VPN.

    4) Put it in the DMZ and create a tuntap so it can hit the ouside world directly. I'd set it up kind of like a honey pot. I'd make it look like a mid-size company with the expected activity and I'd put Snort in passive / logging mode and wireshark on the tuntap. That should be the equivalent of setting a sensor just outside the outermost physical network security boundary. I'd have to make sure I isolated it well from all my other systems. But I could record all the hits that a mom and pop store would get and study them.
    Last edited by Steven_G; 03-29-2014 at 02:00 PM.

  2. #2
    Linux User Steven_G's Avatar
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    Wow, listen to the crickets chirp.

    I can remember when this would start a good conversation.

    Is it really this quiet? Or am I just that big a jerk?

    I figured out a better use for it.

    It's a two year plan.

    Get healthy.

    Get back to work and get out from under about 1/2 our debt and get several months ahead on the other 1/2 and save up a bit of coin.

    I'll be working up to the rest. We'll start with day trips on the weekend and learn.

    Get in to rockhounding for precious / semi-precious metals and stones.

    Build the cluster and put it in the DMZ. Set it up so that it's only reachable via VPN.

    Build a thin client with a satellite connection. Put it in to a specially configured "off road short bus" (Chip Foose / Danny Koker style; literally, I want it done right.) Go almost complelety off grid. Heck, I can get my own micro-satelite for a grand now.

    Use the cluster to model weather and geology. If I get good enough at it I'll be able to follow the washes after the storms and make a fair bit of money doing it. Just set up an LLC and pay quarterly taxes.

    If I get good with at least the basics I can also go up to Williston and make a ton of money up there with that skill set without having to break my back.

  3. #3
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    Does "follow the washes after the storms" imply gold panning or something?

    FWIW I thought the honey pot sounded interesting. I keep a version of Kali around for studying security but never seem to have time for it. Spend too much time programming right now.

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  5. #4
    Linux User Steven_G's Avatar
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    Well panning and sluicing for garnets, rubys, gold, etc. There's tons of money in the ground around here. Water can wash down stuff and make it reachable. And droughts can cause waters to pull back and reveal stuff. It's basically the intersection between weather, hydrology and geology. I figured if I got good enough at the modeling I could either go poke around in the dirt and make some good cash or go up to the oil fields. I figure if I have a good understanding of tech systems, weather modeling and how water changes the ground (even at a basic level) then I shouldn't have any problems getting some kind of a good entry level high-tech job out in the oil fields?

  6. #5
    Linux User Steven_G's Avatar
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    Of course, I wouldn't go to the oil fields until I was good at it; like when I started making 50K a year doing it? I think (IDK, you guys tell me?) that if I show up in Williston in a portable lab / light off road jeep (sort of) / living vehicle with my own cluster out in the cloud with some really nice weather / hydrology / geology models on it that I can hit *anywhere* in a very large area b/c I have 4 of my own micro-satellites I'd be able to make a bit of coin. No?

    I think any oil company up there would hire me in a heartbeat.

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    50k doesn't seem like much. I think if you can find anything significant in the way of geological deposits you're probably going to be worth quite a lot.

    50k you can get doing work for a University or some such.

    Of course I live in a country some what north of you and we do things differently. Still ...

  8. #7
    Linux User Steven_G's Avatar
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    Well, the 50K and year is just an arbitrary measurement of my being good at it. In other words I get to the point that my models and my understanding of geology and hydrology are good enough that I'm actually making money off of them. I could take a drive up to Williston and say hey, I'm already making 50k a year off of my knowledge of water and dirt; can you pay me any more? Maybe I'm off base? But I think skills like that would be very suited to oil field work. At least enough for me to get my foot in the door. And if they look at me like I'm crazy I can always go back to scratching in the dirt for 50K a year.

    Of course, if I got really good and really lucky and was making tons more than that I'd stick with digging through the dirt. But to make 100k a year I'd have to do 100oz of gold a year. That's an awful lot w/o huge pieces of industrial equipment or a staked claim on a piece of land I'd have to buy; which wouldn't be cheap.

    But, as long as I do no permanent damage, beyond what you can do with a shovel, I can mine BLM land legally to my hearts content. And vast sections of the west are BLM land.

    I figure I'd be doing really good to pull 20-25oz of gold a year w/o big industrial equipment and the rest would be however much gemstones that make the difference. (A lot?)

    But the point I'd be making to an oil company would be that I know water and dirt well enough to go pull 50k a year out of the dirt. Let me take a look at your water and dirt. Um, have you looked here for oil yet? And by the way, you need to shore up that embankment otherwise it's going to collapse. And yes, I can fix that system that you can't remote in to.

    Maybe get an entry level position on one of the exploratory teams? If I can *make* 50k a year getting good enough in a couple of years to get a job like that then I figure that beats going 40K in debt to get a degree that would qualify me for the same job.

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