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Clustered Operating System

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Clustered Operating System

Cluster systems are similar to parallel systems because both systems use multiple CPUs. The primary difference is that clustered systems are made up of two or more independent systems linked together. They have independent computer systems and a shared storage media, and all systems work together to complete all tasks. All cluster nodes use two different approaches to interact with one another, like message passing interface (MPI) and parallel virtual machine (PVM).

In this article, you will learn about the Clustered Operating system, its types, classification, advantages, and disadvantages.

What is the Clustered Operating System?

Clustered Operating System

Cluster operating systems are a combination of software and hardware clusters. Hardware clusters aid in the sharing of high-performance disks among all computer systems, while software clusters give a better environment for all systems to operate. A cluster system consists of various nodes, each of which contains its cluster software. The cluster software is installed on each node in the clustered system, and it monitors the cluster system and ensures that it is operating properly. If one of the clustered system’s nodes fails, the other nodes take over its storage and resources and try to restart.

Cluster components are generally linked via fast area networks, and each node executing its instance of an operating system. In most cases, all nodes share the same hardware and operating system, while different hardware or different operating systems could be used in other cases. The primary purpose of using a cluster system is to assist with weather forecasting, scientific computing, and supercomputing systems.

There are two clusters available to make a more efficient cluster. These are as follows:

  1. Software Cluster
  2. Hardware Cluster

Software Cluster

The Software Clusters allows all the systems to work together.

Hardware Cluster

It helps to allow high-performance disk sharing among systems.

Types of Clustered Operating System

There are mainly three types of the clustered operating system:

  1. Asymmetric Clustering System
  2. Symmetric Clustering System
  3. Parallel Cluster System

Asymmetric Clustering System

In the asymmetric cluster system, one node out of all nodes is in hot standby mode, while the remaining nodes run the essential applications. Hot standby mode is completely fail-safe and also a component of the cluster system. The node monitors all server functions; the hot standby node swaps this position if it comes to a halt.

Symmetric Clustering System

Multiple nodes help run all applications in this system, and it monitors all nodes simultaneously. Because it uses all hardware resources, this cluster system is more reliable than asymmetric cluster systems.

Parallel Cluster System

A parallel cluster system enables several users to access similar data on the same shared storage system. The system is made possible by a particular software version and other apps.

Classification of clusters

Computer clusters are managed to support various purposes, from general-purpose business requirements like web-service support to computation-intensive scientific calculations. There are various classifications of clusters. Some of them are as follows:

1. Fail Over Clusters

The process of moving applications and data resources from a failed system to another system in the cluster is referred to as fail-over. These are the databases used to cluster important missions, application servers, mail, and file.

2. Load Balancing Cluster

The cluster requires better load balancing abilities amongst all available computer systems. All nodes in this type of cluster can share their computing workload with other nodes, resulting in better overall performance. For example, a web-based cluster can allot various web queries to various nodes, so it helps to improve the system speed. When it comes to grabbing requests, only a few cluster systems use the round-robin method.

3. High Availability Clusters

These are also referred to as “HA clusters”. They provide a high probability that all resources will be available. If a failure occurs, such as a system failure or the loss of a disk volume, the queries in the process are lost. If a lost query is retried, it will be handled by a different cluster computer. It is widely used in news, email, FTP servers, and the web.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Cluster Operating System

Various advantages and disadvantages of the Clustered Operating System are as follows:


Various advantages of Clustered Operating System are as follows:

1. High Availability

Although every node in a cluster is a standalone computer, the failure of a single node doesn’t mean a loss of service. A single node could be pulled down for maintenance while the remaining clusters take on a load of that single node.

2. Cost Efficiency

When compared to highly reliable and larger storage mainframe computers, these types of cluster computing systems are thought to be more cost-effective and cheaper. Furthermore, most of these systems outperform mainframe computer systems in terms of performance.

3. Additional Scalability

A cluster is set up in such a way that more systems could be added to it in minor increments. Clusters may add systems in a horizontal fashion. It means that additional systems could be added to clusters to improve their performance, fault tolerance, and redundancy.

4. Fault Tolerance

Clustered systems are quite fault-tolerance, and the loss of a single node does not result in the system’s failure. They might also have one or more nodes in hot standby mode, which allows them to replace failed nodes.

5. Performance

The clusters are commonly used to improve the availability and performance over the single computer systems, whereas usually being much more cost-effective than the single computer system of comparable speed or availability.

6. Processing Speed

The processing speed is also similar to mainframe systems and other types of supercomputers on the market.


Various disadvantages of the Clustered Operating System are as follows:

1. Cost-Effective

One major disadvantage of this design is that it is not cost-effective. The cost is high, and the cluster will be more expensive than a non-clustered server management design since it requires good hardware and a design.

2. Required Resources

Clustering necessitates the use of additional servers and hardware, making monitoring and maintenance difficult. As a result, infrastructure must be improved.

3. Maintenance

It isn’t easy to system establishment, monitor, and maintenance this system.

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