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I have been doing some research in building a Raspberry Pi cluster, and I have found 2 main approaches to the cluster configuration. The first I found, such as this report from the University of Southampton, that uses a master node. The other approach I found is the use of cheap tower to use as a load balancer.

I am looking to use the cluster for web hosting, cloud storage, and possibly more uses. Is there any advantage to one solution over the other? Would one allow for more customization than the other, or have better control over processes distributed to the nodes?

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These two solutions are for different types of cluster. The one developed at Southampton University is kind of a super computer - it's good for number crunching, but not designed for use as a server cluster.

If you want to host a web site on multiple Pi servers, you need to use a load balancer. Note that some jobs can be shared across multiple servers, and some can't. If you have a cloud storage system with several Pis, it will be difficult to keep them synchronized. The cluster with the load balancer just serves pages, and it isn't built for cloud storage. You could use several Pis to serve a web site, and use another Pi for cloud storage.

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