Another good thing to do with a bunch of work-stations is to combine their computing capabilities to speed up complex tasks. One such complex task in an engineering company is compiling code. Thankfully, there are useful solutions to this problem that can be implemented easily.

Guide here.

It took about 15 minutes to install and setup distcc as the distributed compiler. What this does is to spread out C/C++ code compilation across a number of machines. Best thing about it is that it uses Bonjour, Zeroconf, or mDNS to configure itself. Therefore, it needed minimal configuration.

Make went from -j8 up to -j32 with the use of distcc. I have not benchmarked a kernel compile yet but I have successfully tested the ability of distcc to spawn jobs across the networked work-stations.

Nice.

PS: It’s supposed to work with cross-compilers as well but I have yet to successfully test this out. We will definitely be needing this feature as we work primarily with non-Intel architectures.