raspberry pi 3 cluster using balena

I am teaching a bioinformatics course and wanted my graduate students to learn about running informatics jobs on a cluster. I thought it would be fun as a class project to build a cluster using raspberry pi 3b. The skillset among my students will be a heavy mix of computer science and those with a biology background. I have found several tutorials online but nothing that leverages balena with clear presentation and instruction. If my cluster was going to be 4 raspberry pi’s, would I plan to push code to each device independently through the dashboard? I am rather new to balena.

Hello there! That’s a very interesting project. Are you planning on running sequence alignment or something else?

Back to your question. First, you probably want to follow our getting started guide here: https://www.balena.io/docs/learn/getting-started/raspberrypi3/nodejs/. You will need to create a container with the tools you need. If group up all PIs in the same application, balenaCloud will push the same tools to all devices.

BalenaCloud takes care of managing your devices and what they run, but distributing the tasks is something you will need to set up. The simplest method is probably through balena-cli with the balena ssh command.

Keep us updated!

Thanks! I will use this thread to keep all questions and comments. I am planning to run some preliminary sequence alignments on the cluster.

Glad to hear we’ve answered your questions. Feel free to update the thread if you have any more comments.