What to do with 8 G4s

orlandosanz

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 9, 2005
10
0
76040
The Cisco Lab at the college at I go to, and work for, has 8 PowerMac G4s. What would be a good use for them in the environment that they are in. It should be networking related.

The specs are:
Dual 450MHz G4
30GB HDD
DVD-RAM
ZIP 100
1GB SDRAM (256MBx4)
16MB Video Card (VGA & ADC)
Gigabit Ethernet
2 USB
2 Firewire
SCSI interface
No Airport card
Mac OS 10.3.9

And they have no access to the Internet, for security reasons the Cisco lab has no access the school's network. There are 3 PCs with internet access though. Most of the other computers are Dells.

I have 2 weeks to come up with a use for them before they go to another department or warehouse.

Maybe I can show the Professor networking through Firewire?
 

gerrynjr

macrumors member
Oct 16, 2007
58
0
You could setup an XGrid cluster.
There are a few rendering tools that will use this cluster (blender, visualhub come to mind)

If you hold programming classes, this could be used by a multithreaded programming class as well...
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,777
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
:D

Well, out of curiosity, I decided to look some numbers up...

The Primate Labs benchmark score for this Mac is 421. I don't know how linear the scale is, but over-stepping, and supposing that if a grid were 100% efficient on all processors, you'd get 4210, and if it were 85% efficient on all processors (since the aforementioned really isn't reasonable), perhaps in the region of 3500-3600. Which is probably still somewhat an overrepresentation of its capabilities.

For reference, the fastest Mac Mini comes in at 2574, and this would put this grid more in the range of the C2E iMac (3740).

So, okay, okay, a little bit better than I gave it credit for. :D The C2E astonishingly still has more hard drive space, though!
 

orlandosanz

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 9, 2005
10
0
76040
Thank you everyone for the suggestions.
After posting the question, I went and checked if I was actually able to configure IP addresses on the Firewire ports and it wasn't possible. On my Macbook C2D I am able to configure an IP address and network it with my Sony PC, which also supports the TCP/IP protocol through Firewire.

As far as making a "Super Computer" or Distribute Computing I don't think it would be appropriate in a networking class focussed mostly around Cisco equipment.

I told the head of the our department about Folding@Home and he was interested, but I'm not sure how much.

I also found out that all equipment that goes to warehouse goes on sale at the end of the school year. I will post again if they end up going to warehouse for anyone interested in purchasing.
 

Markleshark

macrumors 603
Aug 15, 2006
6,240
0
Carlisle, Up Norf!
:D

Well, out of curiosity, I decided to look some numbers up...

The Primate Labs benchmark score for this Mac is 421. I don't know how linear the scale is, but over-stepping, and supposing that if a grid were 100% efficient on all processors, you'd get 4210, and if it were 85% efficient on all processors (since the aforementioned really isn't reasonable), perhaps in the region of 3500-3600. Which is probably still somewhat an overrepresentation of its capabilities.

For reference, the fastest Mac Mini comes in at 2574, and this would put this grid more in the range of the C2E iMac (3740).

So, okay, okay, a little bit better than I gave it credit for. :D The C2E astonishingly still has more hard drive space, though!
Not a bad effort, shows up how far things have came though, when one computer is now as fast as 8 not really that old ones. Amazing.

How would the FW network on 8 computers work ?? :confused:


If there's external links on the info please lead me to the links.. :eek: :eek:
TBH, I actually have no idea about the workings of firewire networking. It's actually something I've never used. However, I'm guessing (From looking at the Firewire networking settings in Leopard) thats it's much the same as an ethernet network, just more personal and not as long range.
 
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