Render Farm Build 29

DISCLAIMER: This is a continuing series detailing the painful story of a DIY render farm build.  It is terribly technics and
somewhat frustrating.  Those who are unprepared for such “entertainment” are advised to ignore these posts.

Back in my office, I installed the first slave, called “Gog,” and started everything up in situ.

  1. Powered up Gog – everything seems okay.
  2. Powered up Cyclops – that’s the PDC/Mac mini PPC – I set it to start drqman on login.
  3. I ran the script found in the Dr. Queue distribution to set up the drqman master as a launchd daemon.  In other words, it should auto-launch on restart.
  4. X-Quartz needs to auto-launch on the PDC, so I added it to the login items on the PDC.
  5. Restarted.
  6. Thus – the master was running, the shared directories “logs” and “tmp” should have been available on the network to all machines.
  7. What about storage?  Where do I put big storage?  Because the “tmp” directory was on Cyclops, which has a puny hard drive – maybe 80Gb?  Perhaps only 40?  It’s an old machine.  If the slaves render to that directory it will fill soon.  And any portable/removable drive could not be configured for every single job.
  8. Screen sharing was on for the slave “Gog,” so I could connect to it from the PDC without switching monitor and keyboard cables.
  9. Success!  The PDC restarted, ran the master, and everything was fine.
  10. The slave.conf file was working, and the slave machine reported it had loaded, but I was not sure the environment variables were set properly.  I was not getting any connection.  The master could not see the slave.


I had to shut the door and wait for the next day.

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