What is grid computing?

Grid computing involves a group of networked computers that work together as a virtual supercomputer to perform large tasks, such as analysing huge sets of data or weather modelling. Through the cloud, you can assemble and use vast computer grids for specific time periods and purposes, only paying, if necessary, for what you use to save both the time and expense of purchasing and deploying the necessary resources yourself. Also, by splitting tasks across multiple machines, processing time is significantly reduced to increase efficiency and minimise wasted resources.

Unlike with parallel computing, grid computing projects typically have no time dependency associated with them. They use computers that are part of the grid only when idle, and operators can perform tasks unrelated to the grid at any time. Security must be considered when using computer grids, as controls on member nodes are usually very loose. Redundancy should also be built in, as many computers may disconnect or fail during processing.

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