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Distributed Desktop on SunRays - Sun Solaris

Thanks Shel, The SunRay system was what I meant. One of the computer labs at my Uni employs these terminals. I find that the GUI appears to be quite smooth, even though some 30 SunRays are running applications from a single server at the same time. I'm just wondering how fast those packets need to be transferred over the network for real-time desktop computing (i.e. users won't be aware of the delay the application experiences). I would be grateful if someone can suggests some links for info on this, as I can't find any specification of the network requirements for ...

  1. #1

    Default Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    Thanks Shel,

    The SunRay system was what I meant. One of the computer labs at my Uni
    employs these terminals. I find that the GUI appears to be quite
    smooth, even though some 30 SunRays are running applications from a
    single server at the same time.

    I'm just wondering how fast those packets need to be transferred over
    the network for real-time desktop computing (i.e. users won't be aware
    of the delay the application experiences).

    I would be grateful if someone can suggests some links for info on
    this, as I can't find any specification of the network requirements
    for SunRay at sun.com
    neltik Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    neltik <com> wrote: 

    Currently Sun Ray's are only supported over a switched 100Mbps network
    (with at least a Gigabit uplink to the server being recommended).
    Historically only a private network was supported, but as of SRSS 2.0
    you can also run them over a public network shared with other traffic
    (although a private network is still recommended, especially in medium/
    large scale deployments).

    At the end of the day, the speed of the server has more to do with the
    performance than the speed of the network, as long as the network is above
    a certain level. I've run a single Sun Ray over a 10Mbps half-duplex
    network and it does work, although it's not as smooth as over 100mbps.

    Scott
    Scott Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    neltik wrote: 

    Don't let it do too much graphical stuff
    Text editing, emailing, web surfing, flash and so on is fine, but don't
    go playing movies or visualization plugins for music, or fractal
    screensavers, that sort of high-bandwith requiring stuff. Your server
    won't appreciate it.

    We are doing 25 SunRays on a Sun Fire 280R with 2 900Mhz U-Sparc III's
    and 2 gigs of RAM, and my average load, last time I checked was 3.75

    Take into account that server is also a file server and PC NetLink PDC
    for my entire network.

    The reason it's almost twice the size it should be for a configuration
    like this is because it was supposed to become database server as well.
    However, the database server makers stopped making it for Solaris... >-|
    Ronald Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    Ronald van Zantvoort wrote: 
    >
    >
    > Don't let it do too much graphical stuff
    > Text editing, emailing, web surfing, flash and so on is fine, but don't
    > go playing movies or visualization plugins for music, or fractal
    > screensavers, that sort of high-bandwith requiring stuff. Your server
    > won't appreciate it.
    >
    > We are doing 25 SunRays on a Sun Fire 280R with 2 900Mhz U-Sparc III's
    > and 2 gigs of RAM, and my average load, last time I checked was 3.75
    >
    > Take into account that server is also a file server and PC NetLink PDC
    > for my entire network.
    >
    > The reason it's almost twice the size it should be for a configuration
    > like this is because it was supposed to become database server as well.
    > However, the database server makers stopped making it for Solaris... >-|[/ref]

    Ok, wel looks like your server can't cope with the load then.
    We had 6 E4500's with each 12 400Mhz USII CPU's and 12Gb of RAM to cope
    with 600 users and this worked fine. We could do everything on those
    systems.

    The network was completely gigabit between the servers and 100Mb
    switched to the sunrays.

    Fr3aK3rMaN Guest

  5. #5

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    Hi

    neltik wrote: 

    Others have replied regarding the network requirements of SunRays.
    I can give some anecdotal performance info on Sunrays vs
    workstation.

    I have a workstation (U60 2 x 450MHz US-II 512MB FFB-2) and a SunRay on my
    desk. I'm one of the last workstation users in my area -
    I like running custom kernels etc on it. The Sunray server has
    never been modest - SF4800 with 8 cpus and GBs of memory (it
    started out with 750MHz US-III, currently has 1200MHz US-III
    and 32GB. It is plumbed in as recommended - 100Mbit switched
    network to the SunRays, and the SunRay server and all other
    servers connect via gigabit ethernet.

    There is nothing in my everyday work that my workstation does
    faster than the SunRay. I'm not a graphics user, but have
    fired up Quake on the SunRay and it surprisingly playable
    (if not stellar). For most things the SunRay emabarasses the
    U60 into looking like the ageing workstation it is - the
    SunRay isn't just as quick, but usually very noticably
    faster. The shared fast CPUs, shared plentiful memory
    combined with gigabit access to NFS/mail etc servers beat
    the workstation (100Mbit network) hands down.

    You might think this unsurprising - new hardware vs several
    years old - but I did sort of expect the workstation still
    to be quicker for some things. eg, when say mozilla is
    fully up and running (no more NFS transfers) you'd think
    the workstation with local graphics etc would paint mozilla
    windows (eg, from icon to maximized) quickly, be quick around
    the gui etc. It's not the case - every aspect of use is
    noticably faster (so much so that even mozilla/firebird etc
    feel instant!). The same applies for apps like StarOffice etc.

    The only reason I still have the U60 is because the Sunray
    does not yet support high enough resolutions to make respectable
    use of a 24" monitor. But this feature was announced along with
    other product announcements this week.

    Hope that gives some insight.

    Gavin

    Gavin Guest

  6. #6

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays


    Hi Gavin!

    Gavin Maltby <com> writes:
     
    ....
     

    And the thing I like the best is that it is absolutely quiet!

    No fans. Haven't had that since the SLC:s/ELC:s :-)

    The coolest thing though is the session management. Frequently
    colleagues comes to me with problems they want me to look into, and
    they bring their smart card, stuff it into my SunRay and I can
    immediately see what they have on their screens.

    I was on training in Munich a few weeks ago, and on breaks I could pop
    my card into any free SunRay and instantly have my session active. It
    takes a while starting up everything remote otherwise.

    I'm also running two sunrays in a multihead setup. Some are running
    Xinerama with two sunrays, which works fine.
     

    Cheers,
    Thomas
    Thomas Guest

  7. #7

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    HI,


    Thomas Tornblom wrote: 
    Yees,


    I have one in the livingroom, there is nobody complaining about noise
    now exept about the look of the huge 21" Sun monitor but that is a
    matter of preferences :))

    /michael



    Michael Guest

  8. #8

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    Thomas Tornblom <SE.remove-to-reply> writes: 

    Yes, that's the coolest thing! But a lot of people don't notice
    this since they are running a noisy air conditioning system all
    year around (especially in the USA) -- so that seems to be more
    an argument for e.g. Europeans...


    Markus
    Markus Guest

  9. #9

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    Markus Gyger wrote:
     
    >
    >
    > Yes, that's the coolest thing! But a lot of people don't notice
    > this since they are running a noisy air conditioning system all
    > year around (especially in the USA) -- so that seems to be more
    > an argument for e.g. Europeans...
    >
    >
    > Markus[/ref]

    I have one in my living room to control my home sound system for just
    that reason -- no computer noise.

    CJT Guest

  10. #10

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    On Fri, 19 Sep 2003, Thomas Tornblom wrote:
     

    Now THAT is cool. I use a dual head workstation setup here,
    and one of the reasons I haven't too closely at SunRays is
    because I thought they would be able to handle two heads.
    Hmm, that, and the fact that new SunRays support a decent
    resolution (1280x1024 is a little low for my tastes!), I might
    take another look at them.

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-online.net

    Rich Guest

  11. #11

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    On 19 Sep 2003, Markus Gyger wrote:
     

    And us home users!

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-online.net

    Rich Guest

  12. #12

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays


    "neltik" <com> wrote: 

    Latency < 25 ms is the main requirement, the next
    most important is that your network doesn't drop packets.
    Network bandwidth usually isn't a bottleneck.


    Thomas
    Thomas Guest

  13. #13

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    On Fri, 19 Sep 2003, Markus Gyger wrote:
     

    Originally, yes! But I moved to BC 4.5 years ago. We've
    only recently turned our A/C off...

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-online.net

    Rich Guest

  14. #14

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    On Fri, 19 Sep 2003 17:15:25 GMT
    Rich Teer <com> wrote:
     
    >
    > Now THAT is cool. I use a dual head workstation setup here,
    > and one of the reasons I haven't too closely at SunRays is
    > because I thought they would be able to handle two heads.
    > Hmm, that, and the fact that new SunRays support a decent
    > resolution (1280x1024 is a little low for my tastes!), I might
    > take another look at them.
    >[/ref]
    Sun Rays support up to 16 heads, each head driven by a single sunray.
    Barbie Guest

  15. #15

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    On Sat, 20 Sep 2003, Barbie LeVile wrote:
     

    That would be confusing if you used SMartCard authentication,
    if you put them into the wrong machine (so the "right" display
    appeared oin the "left"). But I guess in that case, you'd
    just yank out the cards, and swap 'em over.

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-online.net

    Rich Guest

  16. #16

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    On Fri, 19 Sep 2003 23:43:16 GMT
    Rich Teer <com> wrote:
     
    >
    > That would be confusing if you used SMartCard authentication,
    > if you put them into the wrong machine (so the "right" display
    > appeared oin the "left"). But I guess in that case, you'd
    > just yank out the cards, and swap 'em over.
    >[/ref]

    Not cunfusing at all, since only the primary head even reacts to the card in
    a multuhead setup, the other just give you the finger so to speak.
    And since the primary is all that needs access to, the others can be put
    behind the monitors or elsewhere out of the way.

    --
    Barbie - Prayers are like junkmail for Jesus

    I have seen things you lusers would not believe.
    I've seen Sun monitors on fire off the side of the multimedia lab.
    I've seen NTU lights glitter in the dark near the Mail Gate.
    All these things will be lost in time, like the root partition last week.
    Time to die.
    Barbie Guest

  17. #17

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    In article <de>,
    Barbie LeVile <de> writes: 
    >>
    >> That would be confusing if you used SMartCard authentication,
    >> if you put them into the wrong machine (so the "right" display
    >> appeared oin the "left"). But I guess in that case, you'd
    >> just yank out the cards, and swap 'em over.
    >>[/ref]
    >
    > Not cunfusing at all, since only the primary head even reacts to the card in
    > a multuhead setup, the other just give you the finger so to speak.
    > And since the primary is all that needs access to, the others can be put
    > behind the monitors or elsewhere out of the way.[/ref]

    And don't need keyboards? Then I guess they can't be used independently
    without reconfiguring (and adding back the keyboards)? I suppose there's
    some definition on the server as to how to group them? Does that group
    specific SunRays, or give particular users up to N that are identified as
    being contiguous (if not busy), or what? Does Xcinerama work across
    them? What if someone hot-sessions from a group to a smaller one (or
    none)?

    Given reasonable or at least doented and predictable answers to those,
    it sounds like fun, maybe. OTOH, I wonder how many folks use multiple
    heads but don't need the speed that the SunRay doesn't quite have (for
    something with some really intense screen updating going on, like heavy
    OpenGL animation or video).

    --
    mailto:smart.net http://www.smart.net/~rlhamil
    Richard Guest

  18. #18

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays


    "Richard L. Hamilton" <smart.net> wrote: 
    >
    > And don't need keyboards? Then I guess they can't be used independently
    > without reconfiguring (and adding back the keyboards)? I suppose there's
    > some definition on the server as to how to group them?[/ref]

    Yep, a so-called multihead group.
     

    You need to specify particular Sun Ray appliances, using utmhadm.
     

    utxconfig -x on|off, i.e., you can turn xinerama on/off
    on a per token basis.
     

    You have to move the mouse cursor across
    the border of the screen to see that part
    of the screen which does not fix on your
    current display, the so-called "paning".
    You can create a similar effect on a workstation using
    ffbconfig -dev <device> -res <small_res> now


    Thomas
    Thomas Guest

  19. #19

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    Thomas Dehn wrote: 
    >>
    >>And don't need keyboards? Then I guess they can't be used independently
    >>without reconfiguring (and adding back the keyboards)? I suppose there's
    >>some definition on the server as to how to group them?[/ref]
    >
    >
    > Yep, a so-called multihead group.
    >[/ref]

    My dream: http://viewsonic.com/multipanelsetup/

    using a bunch of sunrays in a multihead group.

    I've already set up 3 x 18" Sun LCD's as a multihead group with a single
    card reader, keyboard & mouse. The other two 'rays were buried behind
    the panels.

    But then my coworkers complained about me having 3 LCD's and them having
    none. Saying 'I'm the boss...' didn't quite them so I gave up 2 of the
    LCD's. :)

    We have 3 & 4 tube multihead groups using SunRay 100's for our
    operations staff. They have all relavent status information displayed to
    them on that group -- and only ned a single kbd & mouse to interact with
    the consoles of a whole bunch of devices.

    --Mike

    jankemi(remove) Guest

  20. #20

    Default Re: Distributed Desktop on SunRays

    On Sat, 20 Sep 2003 10:39:16 -0000
    smart.net (Richard L. Hamilton) wrote:
     

    right, no keyboards and no mouse once they are configured.
     

    right
     

    They are grouped by their unit ids, which points to the hardware of the ray
    itself.
    the rays are not usable for anything else as long as in a multihead group.

     

    Yes
     

    Then the multiple heads are realized by virtual desktops, you switch between
    them by moving the mouse past the screen borders.
     

    Its all doented in the sunray docs and works very well.
     

    Quiet alot i would say, a sunray isn't actualy that slow.
    I was able to playback fullscreen video (1280x1024) at 23fps.
    They are basicaly perfect for office style type of work, or programming.
    Granted i wouldn't use them as multimedia terminals or so.
    However we did an implentation for an universiaty that uses them as audio
    playback stations, because they needed absolut silence from their systems.
    works very nicely.




    --
    Barbie - Prayers are like junkmail for Jesus

    I have seen things you lusers would not believe.
    I've seen Sun monitors on fire off the side of the multimedia lab.
    I've seen NTU lights glitter in the dark near the Mail Gate.
    All these things will be lost in time, like the root partition last week.
    Time to die.
    Barbie Guest

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