Name our cool computer cluster...
October 30, 2007 2:58 PM   Subscribe

Name our cool computer cluster.

So a small group of us are building a computer cluster, and we need to name it something ... cool. But, we're completely out of ideas! Please help, hivemind.

Technical details:
14 Dual quad-core Intel Xeon @1.86GHz, with 6Gbps Infinband interconnect, running Debian Linux, with netboot for the nodes.

Guidelines: pretty much anything goes, I think. Puns, parodies also appreciated. Or just something cool-sounding. We probably shouldn't mention Dell or Intel, but other technical references are cool.
posted by bkudria to Computers & Internet (59 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
posted by grouse at 2:59 PM on October 30, 2007 [1 favorite]

posted by sanko at 3:00 PM on October 30, 2007

posted by kuujjuarapik at 3:06 PM on October 30, 2007

I love naming servers, but I never go for technical puns. Usually sci-fi or something else nerdy. I would go with Horde, personally.

"Log in to the Horde immediately!"

Come on, that's awesome.

Anything that references the collective nature of the cluster would probably be appropriate... Borg, or maybe The Collective; Hivemind! If you are an Asimov nerd, Gaia. If you like the Ender series too ridiculously much, you could call it Jane. Heinlein? Mike (or HOLMES). I think HAL might be a little too broad, you know.

Also, I'm guessing it's a Beowulf cluster? You might want to go with Beowulf puns, like Grendel, or Hrothgar. Grendel is a great, euphonious, Anglo-Saxon name if you like that kind of thing, that is my second choice after...

posted by synaesthetichaze at 3:08 PM on October 30, 2007

"The Dog Named Mark Farner from Grand Funk Railroad".

Obscure Butthole Surfers reference. See, they had a dog, and they made the dog a member of the band, and they named the dog "Mark Farner from Grand Funk Railroad" so they could say, "'Mark Farner from Grand Funk Railroad' is in our band!"....anyway, it'd abbreviate nicely to "The Dog".

I need to get out more often.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 3:09 PM on October 30, 2007

Best answer: It's in your question, coming out of your subconscious.
Please help, hivemind.
Call it hivemind, or perhaps 'The Hive'.
posted by sien at 3:15 PM on October 30, 2007

Amino acid names make great server names. Valine, alanine, proline, tyrosine, etc.
posted by chrisamiller at 3:16 PM on October 30, 2007

I vote for "Bolsheviks". Then you can call each of the servers after a Russian revolutionary. "Dang! Lenin has crashed again, Stalin has a memory fault and needs to be purged, and Trotsky has an icepick through his head!"
posted by baggers at 3:17 PM on October 30, 2007 [3 favorites]

Latin names for strains of anthrax or other diseases. Or characters from Lost.
posted by craniac at 3:26 PM on October 30, 2007

Are you looking for names for each terminal as well?

Cluster - Sol-G2V or Sun

Terminals (Planets and Major Moons) - Choose from:
Terra, Luna
Mars, Phobos, Deimos
Jupiter, Ganymede, Callisto, Io, Europa
Saturn, Titan, Mimas
Uranus, Oberon, Miranda
Neptune, Triton
Pluto, Charon
posted by Nice Guy Mike at 3:29 PM on October 30, 2007

Hmm, none of my previous suggestions lend themselves to naming the individual nodes in the cluster. My secret plan for when I am in charge of my own installation is to call the overall "thing" (in your case the cluster, in my case, probably the Hardware Management Console) Eldar, and name every server after a Tolkien Elf.

You can have that one. I will probably never get to use it.
posted by synaesthetichaze at 3:34 PM on October 30, 2007

Best answer: I would advise "Gestalt", which is probably a little too on-the-nose....

I am also a fan of naming the computers all individual names, as well as the collective. Gestalt is soooo good though! ^_^
posted by indiebass at 3:35 PM on October 30, 2007

Personally I go for names of characters from the Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy
posted by singingfish at 3:37 PM on October 30, 2007

Team Discovery Channel
posted by monkeymadness at 3:40 PM on October 30, 2007

Just what variety of Geeks are you?
The Forest, with individuals named for trees: Oak, Maple, Hemlock
The Shire, with Gandalf, Frodo, Bilbo, Aragorn
Mordor, with Darktower, Sauron, Nazgul
Enterprise, with Kirk, Scotty, Uhuru
My favorite naming scheme was one in which Novell servers were named for Greek gods, Windows servers for Roman gods.
Or call it House, and name them after the usual suspects: lupus, vasculitis, sarcoma, etc.
posted by theora55 at 3:44 PM on October 30, 2007

Best answer: There's always Pleiades, which is about the best-known star cluster out there.

But I think sien has it - hivemind.
posted by hangashore at 3:44 PM on October 30, 2007

"We are LEGION"
posted by cosmicbandito at 3:48 PM on October 30, 2007

make that LEGION
posted by cosmicbandito at 3:50 PM on October 30, 2007

Best answer: Silicon. 14 is the atomic number of silicon.

Fortnight. self-explanatory

Temperance. The 14th tarot card.

Agrippa Postumus dies. What a great name. Call it Agrippa or posthumous.

Or name it hivemind. and name each machine after the first 14 posters in this thread. "Dude, someone investigate the race condition on BitterOldPunk and reboot fandango_matt."
posted by damn dirty ape at 3:52 PM on October 30, 2007

Name it Chicomostoc, after the ancient Aztec gods. Then you can name each node after a god:

posted by kcm at 3:59 PM on October 30, 2007 [1 favorite]

I'll second 'Hivemind', and suggest that you name each of the servers after a member of Metafilter: matthowie, jessamyn, cortex, etc.
posted by malaprohibita at 4:07 PM on October 30, 2007 [3 favorites]

Of course, you should make sure to spell 'mathowie' correctly, unlike myself. ugh
posted by malaprohibita at 4:09 PM on October 30, 2007

Call the cluster Scoville, and names the boxes after peppers.
posted by dws at 4:13 PM on October 30, 2007


Name the nodes something stupid, so you can easily find them (ie, dygac_01 -> dygac_14)
posted by SirStan at 4:14 PM on October 30, 2007

Also; I feel ashamed no one has suggested hal.
posted by SirStan at 4:15 PM on October 30, 2007

Best answer: Black Mesa

Nodes can be Freeman, Alyx, Dog, Eli, Breen, Mossman, Kleiner, Barney, Headcrab, Combine, Crowbar, City17, Shotgun and Grenade.
posted by infinitewindow at 4:16 PM on October 30, 2007

This is a monstrosity of computational power, I would name is accordingly:


"ping CRUSHERDESTROYER". Best terminal session ever.
posted by tracert at 4:20 PM on October 30, 2007

posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 4:21 PM on October 30, 2007

Name them all after Iain Banks culture ships.
posted by juv3nal at 4:25 PM on October 30, 2007 [1 favorite]

More on wikipedia.
posted by juv3nal at 4:26 PM on October 30, 2007

Just don't do what the nano group at my school did and name it "schroedinger":

>ssh shrodinger
ssh: shrodinger: Name or service not known
>ssh shroedinger
ssh: shroedinger: Name or service not known
>ssh schrodinger
ssh: schrodinger: Name or service not known
asdfjklhasklj: Command not found.

also: do NOT listen to kcm.
posted by PercussivePaul at 4:27 PM on October 30, 2007

Epic Rack

Zerg Rush

Bootsy Collins

Rory's First Cluster

East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94
posted by pokermonk at 4:28 PM on October 30, 2007 [2 favorites]

If you can't find something here, or here, you fail.
posted by Mach5 at 4:33 PM on October 30, 2007

Think about a name, and then a collective name. At a company in Seattle, we named a three-server cluster after species of salmon -- King, Coho and Chinook. The cluster itself, as a collective noun, then came be to known as "the Fish," as in "Did you replicate to the Fish?"


-- > Olympus

--> The Planets
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 4:35 PM on October 30, 2007

Name the cluster itslef "The Culture", and then name the individual servers after culture ships.
Don't leave off the prefixes, so: "GSV What Are The Civilian Applications?"
posted by signal at 4:42 PM on October 30, 2007

I'm sure you can find 14 well-liked beers. For bonus points, the server labels can be made from the side of a 6 pack. I'd work for you in a second.
posted by devilsbrigade at 4:50 PM on October 30, 2007

posted by rob511 at 4:59 PM on October 30, 2007 [1 favorite]

> Fustercluck

I was just getting there.

Call it Cluster Fuck (CF in official documents. Or "Claudia Ferrari"?), with individual terminals with women's porn names such as Jenna, Linda, Christy, Bambi, Misty, Cherry, Nikki, Ginger, Amber, Savannah, Destiny, and Traci, and (or?) men's porn names such as Ron, Peter, John, Dirk, Buck, and Harry. You can find plenty o' names from here.
posted by pracowity at 5:03 PM on October 30, 2007

P-Funk Clu-Star

nodes: Bootsy, Catfish, GClinton, Stingray, Fuzzy, Big Foot, and perhaps Funkenstein just to really paint the white house black

whenever hardware maintenance must occur, repeat after me,
"Tear the roof off the sucker."
posted by pokermonk at 5:16 PM on October 30, 2007 [1 favorite]

(it's got to give up the funk)
posted by pokermonk at 5:16 PM on October 30, 2007

No dude it's got to be The Mothership if you go with P-Funk names.
posted by phrontist at 5:35 PM on October 30, 2007 [1 favorite]

My old school went with tree names. There are lots of short, memorable trees. Birch, Ash, Pine, Oak, Maple, Apple, Olive, Pear. There's not a natural order or hierarchy. There's enough that you can avoid the ones that are other software names if you want. "SSH into Pine?? What the hell?"
posted by a robot made out of meat at 6:00 PM on October 30, 2007

posted by tim_in_oz at 6:08 PM on October 30, 2007

Oohh! The mothership! You could add Mr. Wiggles the Worm and Sir Nose D'Voidoffunk.. Starchild... I'm out.
posted by xorry at 6:09 PM on October 30, 2007

the crushinator
posted by DJWeezy at 6:32 PM on October 30, 2007

I lobbied to call ours WOPR. Didn't take, unfortunately.
posted by jmcmurry at 7:20 PM on October 30, 2007 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: To clarify, all our nodes are just numbered sequentially, for easy reference. They are all identical anyway, and we don't really address them individually.

But keep the names coming, we are looking at all of these. I guess we need a team name too (this is for a competition, and yes, I'll thank Mefi)
posted by bkudria at 7:29 PM on October 30, 2007

building off infinitewindow, I nominate The Combine
posted by cowbellemoo at 7:47 PM on October 30, 2007

posted by mpls2 at 8:00 PM on October 30, 2007

Subatomic particles are highly geeky: hadron, lepton, baryon, muon, etc. A cluster of them adds up to an atom, so you've got the parts and the whole covered.

(Love the Norse gods, but the Aztecs are way worse than schroedinger!)
posted by Quietgal at 8:11 PM on October 30, 2007


Mypants just went down.
Someone just broke into mypants!
Mypants is running way too hot.
Mypants is out of space.
Check the logs on mypants.
Analyze yesterday's core dump, ad infinitum.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 8:24 PM on October 30, 2007 [3 favorites]

British ships of the line, e.g., Indefatigable, Alacrity, Surprise, Invincible, Illustrious, Victory, etc..
posted by Zach! at 9:04 PM on October 30, 2007

Grapes. Chardonnay, pinot noir, syrah, Concord, muscadine...
posted by casarkos at 11:25 PM on October 30, 2007

Venereal Diseases.

Sorry. I believe they're called STDs' now.
(Musta missed that memo)
posted by DrtyBlvd at 3:08 AM on October 31, 2007

Ikea furniture. Worked well for us.
posted by Geckwoistmeinauto at 5:06 AM on October 31, 2007

Take a look at some animal collective nouns. Maybe ones that refer to penguins?

colony of penguins
crèche of penguins
huddle of penguins
parcel of penguins
rookery of penguins
posted by ALongDecember at 6:22 AM on October 31, 2007

Best answer: I nominate 'Singularity'.
posted by SeanMac at 10:58 PM on October 31, 2007

Response by poster: Update, everybody: we chose "Strangelove" as in "Dr. Strangelove, or: How I Learned..." etc etc. I've marked best answer to those whose names we seriously considered. Thanks, everybody!
posted by bkudria at 4:45 PM on November 6, 2007

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