Intel Computer Systems Cluster (the "fish machines")

You will be doing your assignments for this class on the Intel Cluster (also known as the "fish machines"), a set of 24 Pentium III Xeon servers that Intel has generously donated to CMU for systems courses.

The fish machines run the Red Hat 6.2 distribution of Linux (version 2.2.16), are rack-mounted in the Wean Hall 3rd floor machine room, and are administered by the CS facilities group. They are rebooted every morning at 7am.

Getting help

Information about the CS computing environment is at

Frequently asked questions

Q: How do I get an account?
A: Accounts will be created for you automatically.

Q: Are the accounts ready yet?
A: YES! (6pm, May 21)

Q: What do I need to do before logging in for the very first time?
A: From your Andrew home directory on one of the Andrew Unix cluster machines (linux.andrew, etc.), run the following one-time checkin script:


Q: What does the checkin script do?
A: It creates two subdirectories in your Andrew home directory: "15-349" and "349hw".

Remember, you only need to run the checkin script once, before your very first login to the fish machines.

Q: I looked in my 15-349 directory and it's empty. What gives?
A: To see the .klogin and .login files, you need to use "ls -a".

Q: How do I log into one of these machines once I've run the checkin script?
A: If your Andrew login is bovik and you want to login to machine FISH, then login as follows:

% telnet
Connected to
Escape character is '^]'.
Red Hat Linux release 6.2 (Zoot)
Kernel 2.2.16 on an i686

             ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ don't leave this out!
password: [andrew password]

Alternatively, if you use ssh:

% ssh -l's password: [andrew password]

Don't forget to replace "FISH" with a cluster machine name from the table below.

Q: I did everything you said but I still can't login. Now what?
A: The main reasons students can't login are:

In either case, delete the 15-349 and 349hw directories, rerun the checkin script, and try again. If you still can't login, contact your instructors and we'll get you squared away.

Fish machines that are available to students

Intel engineers traditionally use the names of North American rivers as internal names for their processor projects. So it seems fitting that we, as denizens of the Intel cluster, name the machines after freshwater fish of North America. The machines can be accessed with either ssh or telnet.

Machines available to teaching staff for course development

About the Intel Cluster

The machines in the Intel Cluster are connected by a Cisco 3524 switch with 24 full-duplex 100 Mb/s ports and 2 full-duplex 1 Gb/s ports. The switching fabric has a peak bandwidth of 10.8 Gb/s and a maximum aggregate forwarding rate (from port to port) of 5.4 Gb/s.

Each node on the cluster runs Red Hat Linux 6.2 (Linux kernel 2.2.16) and consists of the following hardware:

Last modified: Wed May 22 13:17:11 EDT 2002