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Developing on a Server T1000 or on a Ultra 45 Workstation

Posted on 2006-11-20
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I have two machines, one workstation Ultra 45 and a one Server T1000, both running Solaris 10.
From previous questions and posts I understand I can use the Ultra 45 to write my code (using NetBeans) and then compile for the T1000, adding the flags: -fast -xtarget=ultraT1 -xarch=v9b (I’m planning to take full advantage of the features of the T1000, like the multicore)

Now, my question:
What are the benefits of developing on the Ultra 45, compiling on that for the T1000 and then moving the code,, versus developing and compiling directly on the T1000?
Is there any problem with that? Or it is just the same thing?

Thanks!!!
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Question by:manuel2002m
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bpeterse earned 250 total points
ID: 17981457
I don't see any benefit of writing the code on the slow box, unless your T1000 is a production machine.  In that case, compile only on the T1000 and develop on the old box.
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by:manuel2002m
ID: 17981985
The thing is that I have to buy machines for 6 more developers.
My options:
A) Buy more Ultra 45, one for each or for two developers (providing they can share it)
B) Buy more T1000, I dont know how many of them, but the t1000 doesnt have video, keyboard mouse, it is suppose to be accesed from the network, so I dont know how they are going to write code that way, I mean, from what computer they will access it? (i dont have any idea on how to do so), will they be able to use Netbeans GUI?
Is there any real drawback on using the Ultra 45's to develop code and then compile for the T1000 and later on move the app to the T1000 to see if it works?


Thanks for the thoughs!!
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by:bpeterse
ID: 17982373
I couldn't even find an Ultra 45 on the EOL system list on the Sun site - found an Ultra 10, 30 & 450 though.  What does the 45 have in it?

Are those your only 2 options?  Option B is definitely not the way to go - frought with way too many issues about user space, permissions, memory, etc.

Option A doesn't sound too good either - working on an EOL system which certainly has upper limits on memory which you'll need a considerable amount of for JVMs and keeping developers productive.

What's the feasibility of 1) using the Ultra 45 as a CVS machine, 2) using the T1000 as a test environment and 3) buying some cheap x86 boxes to put the OS of your choice (e.g Slackware) that can handle the development tools yet be inexpensive enough to put in plenty of RAM and a good display?  

Given the 2 options you stated, I'd have to go with A - but your developers aren't going to be very happy! ;-)
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by:Tintin
ID: 17982388
Do your developers have no machines at all at the moment?  You could either look at getting cheap PC's or a thinclient, then setup zones on your T1000.
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by:manuel2002m
ID: 17982476
Guys,,
this is my Ultra 45
http://www.sun.com/desktop/workstation/ultra45/

It has two 1.6 Ghz process,, 1 Gig RAM and a big HD.

This machine is supposed to be new model, so they should be fast enough.

My developers has X86 machines, laptops, all of them, (Dell Latitude D620, Core Duo 1.6 Ghz, 1 Gig RAM, 80 Gig HD, Windows XP professional)
I dont know if they can use that for developing software using Netbeans for the T1000. The only thing I can think of is for example, they can run VMWare on their laptops, install Solaris 10 inside that VM, install Netbeans, and develop on that, and then compile for the T1000,, but I have heard that developing code on x86 and then port it to Sparc is not a good idea, and it is error prone.

Their manager is requesting more T1000 to use it for development, but those toys are very expensive, I'm trying to provide a solution that meet our needs and is not that expensive to implement.

Id like to know my options.
THANKS TO ALL FOR THE GOOD HELP!
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by:bpeterse
ID: 17982575
Sorry - my bad - I was only looking at servers!  

Those Ultra 45's look pretty nice - but their existing machines will work fine.

Sure they can develop on their laptops - our developers do that exclusively.  They can download open source software (e.g. eclipse), install it on their local machine and use the T1000 for a dev environment to test the compiled code in Unix.  Buy another T1000 for your beta and/or production tier and use a cheap box for storing your code (CVS).
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by:Tintin
ID: 17982619
Or you can just install X on the laptops and have all the developers connect to the T1000.  That way, you have one consistent development environment.
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by:manuel2002m
ID: 17982650
But what happens with the code they build on the laptops (X86)?
How can they compile for the T1000?
Will they have to compile it ON the T1000  (if the server is outside their LAN the source code will travel on the network, I dont like that too much), or can they compile ON the laptops FOR the T1000 and then uploaded the app (after compilation) on the T1000 via network?

I really value your ideas guys!
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by:Tintin
ID: 17982675
Why compile on the laptops?  Why not just develop, build and test on the T1000?  
You could set up zones if you want to separate dev, test environments.
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by:manuel2002m
ID: 17982720
If I build and test on the T1000, how many of those Im going to need to support my 6 developers?
And how Im going to scale if I have more devs?
Those T1000 are not cheap.

If we go that way, how can I install the X on the laptops and then connect to the T1000 to develop and build?
WHat OS should I use on the laptop to do so?
How the performance will be (My T1000 has 1 processor and 8 Gigas of RAM)

Thanks!
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by:bpeterse
ID: 17982732
I'm not sure a consistent dev environment is what's needed.  The consistency could start with your alpha or beta test tiers - making the dev tier unchangeable/consistent might create a less-than-desirable amount of creativity.  All the developers might not be working on the same project and thus might need different environments.

But TinTin has a point - and that might be a more cost effective solution.
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by:bpeterse
ID: 17982754
Developing and/or compiling can take place on the laptops - it's done all the time.  And it's even done on XP workstations!  
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by:manuel2002m
ID: 17982796
bpeterse, and if they develop/compile on the laptops (running XP for example) will the app be usable on the T1000? I understand that certain flags must be actiavted to take advantage of the features of the T1000 processor. Wouldnt be the code compiled on the x86 usable only on x86? or there are specific instruction on Netbeans for example to compile on the x86 but for the UltraSparc T?

I dont know if code built on Netbeans for x86 can be compiled on the same machine but for use on the T1000.
Doesnt sound doable to me.

Thanks
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by:Tintin
ID: 17982820
A T1000 should be more than capable of supporting 6 java developers.

Doesn't matter what OS you use on the laptop, OSX, Linux, Windows, Solaris (take your pick), just install X (if the laptop is running windows) and connect to a desktop session on the T1000.  The advantage of this approach is that you have one source for you development tools and don't have to worry about installing software on a number of different laptops.
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by:manuel2002m
ID: 17982907
Understood,,
Let me see if I have it clear:
1- I install Netbeans on the T1000 server
2- Install X on the laptops (windows XP)
3- Make the developers access the desktop session remotely from the server
4- Developers will develop and compile apps on the T1000 from the Windows machines.

Am I right?
Las question, what X software should I install on the Laptops to do so?
Any link, recommendation?

Thanks guys.
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by:Tintin
Tintin earned 250 total points
ID: 17982967
Yes, your summary is correct.    It's not the only solution, but without knowing the full details of your environment, it would be my recommendation.

As for X, you can go down the free path and install cygwin X

http://x.cygwin.com/

or if you want something commercial, there's any number to choose from:

Exceed is very popular

http://www.hummingbird.com/products/nc/exceed/index.html
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by:bpeterse
ID: 17983030
Java = platform independence - which is why it's popular.  If it's compiled on Windows, yes it can run on Unix as long as the versions of Java are the same on the two boxes.  
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by:Tintin
ID: 17983122
Java = mostly platform independence ;-)

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