[Gluster-users] Some questions about theoretical gluster failures.

Harry Mangalam harry.mangalam at uci.edu
Wed Oct 26 02:01:33 UTC 2011

We're considering implementing gluster for a genomics cluster, and it 
seems to have some theoretical advantages that so far seem to have 
been borne out in some limited testing, mod some odd problems with an 
inability to delete dir trees.  I'm about to test with the latest beta 
that was promised to clear up these bugs, but as I'm doing that, 
answers to these Qs would be appraciated...

- what happens in a distributed system if a node goes down?  Does the 
rest of the system keep working with the files on that brick 
unavailable until it comes back or is the filesystem corrupted?  In my 
testing, it seemed that the system indeed kept working and added files 
to the remaining systems, but that files that were hashed to the 
failed volume were unavailable (of course).

- is there a head node?  the system is distributed but you're mounting 
a specific node for the glusterfs mount - if that node goes down, is 
the whole filesystem hosed or is that node reference really a group 
reference and the gluster filesystem continues with the loss of that 
node's files?  ie can any gluster node replace a mountpoint node and 
does that happen transparently? (I haven't tested this).

- can you intermix distributed and mirrored volumes?  This is of 
particular interest since some of our users want to have replicated 
data and some don't care.

Many thanks
Harry Mangalam - Research Computing, OIT, Rm 225 MSTB, UC Irvine
[ZOT 2225] / 92697  Google Voice Multiplexer: (949) 478-4487 
MSTB Lat/Long: (33.642025,-117.844414) (paste into Google Maps)
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