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1.2. Introduction

This document gives a brief description of openMosix, a software package that turns a network of GNU/Linux computers into a computer cluster. Along the way, some background to parallel processing is given, as well as a brief introduction to programs that make special use of openMosix's capabilities. The HOWTO expands on the documentation as it provides more background information and discusses the quirks of various distributions.

Since the creation of this HOWTO some people of the Mosix team created openMosix (more info later), initially both openMosix and Mosix were discussed in this HOWTO. Although lots of information might be valuable to both users of Mosix and openMosix. I decided to split the HOWTO. The latest relase of the Mosix HOWTO, containing info about both Mosix and OpenMosix will be 0.20 and can be found on http://howto.ipng.be/Mosix-HOWTO/Mosix-HOWTO/

Kris Buytaert got involved in this piece of work when Scot Stevenson was looking for somebody to take over the Job: this was during February 2002. While initially we discussed both Mosix and openMosix, this version of the HOWTO now mainly focuses on openMosix. Please note that the document often still mentions Mosix where it should read openMosix.

You will notice that some of the headings are not as serious as they should be. Scot had planned to write the HOWTO in a slightly lighter style, as the world (and even the part of the world with a burping penguin as a mascot) is full of technical literature that is deadly. Therefore some parts still have these comments.