Alfred — Work Distribution System

 

1 Alfred - Overview & Concepts

The Big Picture

monitor

dispatcher

maitre-d

nimby

batcave

Motivation

Important Concepts

 

2 Monitor - The User Interface

Alfred Job Status

Job Queue Window

Job Queue Menubar

The Huntgroup - Servers Available

Per-Job Controls

Job Detail Window - Internal Job Structure

Task Status Information

The Task Menu

Output from Launched Processes

Errors

Inside a Task - Command Details

Chaser Commands - Frame Preview

Other Task Window Controls

Useful Shortcuts

The "Watch-Servers" Maitre-d Status Dialog

The Preferences Dialog

Help Balloons

 

3 Manual page

Name

Synopsis

Description

Options

Notes

Files

 

4 Dispatching

Introduction

Idea of a Hierarchical Job

Terminology

Depth-First Traversal & Evaluation

Dispatching Schemes

Process Launch & Tracking

Command Errors & Blocking

Deleting Jobs & the Dispatcher Lifetime

 

5 Scheduling - Managing Servers & User Access

Intro

Making Remote Servers Available to Alfred

Saving the New Server Definitions

Filtering the Host List

Temporarily Offline Servers

Advanced Scheduling Topics

Group Hierarchies

Viewing and editing the master schedule

Crews: Users + Servers + Times

Server groups

Time groups

Limits and Tags

Server Ping Commands

NIMBY

 

6 The Maitre-d: Operation & Components

Intro

The Master Schedule File

Responding to Dispatcher Requests

Limit Check

Service Type Search

Nimby Check

Priority Check

Server Ping

Other Tasks

HTTP connections

Wrangler Mode

 

7 NIMBY - Not In My Back Yard

Intro

Ejecting in-progress tasks

The Desktop Environment and NIMBY

Note about Screen-Savers

 

8 Scripting - Alfred Language Summary

Synopsis

Introduction

A simple example

Process Launch and Tracking

Remote Servers, Launch Expressions, and Runtime Substitution

Substitutions

Sharing One Server Check-Out

Special Characters and Escapes

Shell Pipelines and other Expressions

Assign: Initializing Global Job Variables

Using Iterate to Simplify Repetitive Scripts

Iterate

On-Demand Processing, Walk-Ahead Limits, and Thwarting

Formatting During Substition and Leading Zero Padding

Iterate Nodes and Job Percent-Done

Conditional Cmd Launches using if Expressions

Cmd

Referencing results from previous commands

Progress or percent-done indication

Exit status

RALF

 

9 Configuration

Configuring for Basic Operation

Configuring Servers and the Maitre-d for Remote Rendering

Start the Remote NetRenderMan Servers

Choose, and initialize, a Maitre-d Host

Add the Remote Servers to the Alfred Schedule

Enabling HTTP Access to Alfred

Wrangler Mode

To enable wrangler mode

Authentication using HTTP cookies

Fallback Maitre-d Servers

Restart On Reboot: init.d/rc2 scripts

Customizing Dialog Messages

Network Name Service Basics

Start with /etc/hosts

Why use NIS?  

Where does DNS / BIND fit in?

A typical small studio configuration

Edit /etc/resolv.conf

Edit /etc/nsswitch.conf

Configure the other systems

Test the hostname look-up service

 

10 Alfserver

Usage

Specifying Alfserver Options

Selecting Among Multiple Renderers

Temporarily Disabling Server Slots

Warnings

 

11 Metrics

Overview

Built-in Metrics

Large Site Considerations

 

12 BatCave

Prerequisites

Configuration

Entering the BatCave

Database Details

 

 

 

 

 

AlfredTM