Beowulf is a cluster that runs with the free operating system Linux or BSD. Meanwhile, there are also special versions of Linux for clusters such as ClusterKnoppix.
" Beowulf " is not the name for a certain software, but rather refers to the structure of the cluster, consisting of networked commercial personal computers ( Class I cluster, see also off-the -shelf computer ) or from specialized hardware is (Class 2 cluster). The individual computers communicate over IP. It enables software such as Message Passing Interface and PVM to distribute calculation operations. The efficiency can be increased by adding more computers.
The " Beowulf Project" was created in 1994 by Donald Becker and Thomas Sterling to life, to develop a cost-effective both as a capable alternative to supercomputers. Today, Beowulf computer, for example, used for research at universities. So entertained for example, the computer center of the TU Chemnitz Beowulf cluster " CLIC ", which was installed by the Chemnitz Megware in 2000. This was in the summer of 2007, out of service since it was replaced by a new high-performance computers.