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The Pico 5 - Our 5-node PicoCluster


The 5-Node PicoCluster is the flagship PicoCluster product.   It has all the necessary features that enable it to duplicate a real data-center environment, but it comes in a tiny cube.  It’s the perfect learning environment for businesses, schools, and homes.  The 5-node PicoCluster can run all of the Big Data software, as well as any other software you might need, but it is very small and energy efficient. You also get the extra benefit of being able to network multiple clusters together to form larger clusters.

PicoCluster 5-node 1

About the 5-node PicoCluster

The 5-node PicoCluster is both energy efficient and full featured.  Contained in its 5 nodes are 5 gigs of ram and 20 processor cores. It comes ready for you to plug in your keyboard, mouse, monitor, and network. The Pico 5 PicoCluster  can do programming, big data, quality assurance, and operations.  Yet the 5-node PicoCluster is extremely affordable.  For about the same price as an iPad, you can own your own mini data-center.  It is also very energy efficient, using only $2-3 worth of electricity per month.

Why PicoCluster

PicoCluster was developed to provide a low-cost learning environment for students interested in Big Data.  According to Craig Brown, founder and CEO of PicoCluster LLC, “Big Data is growing 6 times faster than the regular IT market, but it is really difficult and expensive to fit a data center in a classroom or home environment.  PicoCluster allows students to have a Big Data experience without the size and cost limitations of a data center.  You can learn how to program and utilize clustered systems in a way that no other tool allows.”

What Can a PicoCluster Do

A PicoCluster actually contains multiple (anywhere from 3 to 100 or more) physical computers that are tied together through a network.  Each computer in the network can be used individually or as a group.  The 5-node PicoCluster can be used by up to 5 individual users or as clusters or 2-5 different computers working together in a parallel or distributed system.  Some of the ways a PicoCluster can be used include:

  • Big Data: Hadoop, Spark, Cassandra, Elasticsearch
  • Programming: web sites, databases, applications
  • Development: Big Data, prototyping, algorithm optimization
  • Operations: testing, prototyping
  • Quality Assurance: multiple environments, point and click installs
  • Easy app and data installs

PicoCluster and Education

The 5-node PicoCluster can be used in schools to teach Big Data using any big data software.  Students can actually see the PicoCluster work.   Brown commented, “The first time I started Hadoop…, I was amazed by what I saw. You could see the lights cascading up and down the cluster as the nodes responded to the startup commands. Then the lights settled down to a slow rhythm that showed the cluster had started up and was now ready for commands.”   Teachers can also use the PicoCluster as individual computers with a different student on each node in the cluster.  PicoCluster LLC includes a complete educational platform with hardware, management software, and online training.


PicoCluster at Home

Unlike a regular data center, the 5-node PicoCluster can also be used at home.  It is smaller than a regular computer, so space is not an issue.  It operates as a data center or as a personal computer.  There are tons of educational resources available for the Raspberry Pi, so students of all ages can benefit from it.

PicoCluster and Business

The 5-node PicoCluster is the perfect data center for small and medium businesses.  Not only does it allow for the collection and analyzing of data, but it can also be used for education and training in-house.  The PicoCluster LLC online training resources are open source, allowing your business to benefit from the work of others as well as providing a platform for you to share your knowledge with others.  The PicoCluster is also expandable.  If your company outgrows the 5-node cluster, additional clusters can be networked together to meet your business needs.


If you are looking for Big Data in a Tiny Cube, The Pico 5 PicoCluster is your answer.  It comes in various colors to fit your mood or décor.  Purchase your PicoCluster already built or as a kit, ready for you to put together.  Visit http://www.picocluster.com to place your order or for more information.


  • I just received my Pine64 Picocluster 5 kit. In the kit are 10 sets of heat sinks. Each set consists of 2 small aluminum heat sinks and one larger aluminum heat sink. I cannot find any information on where these should be placed. Can you please provide information.


    James Kelly
  • I have my 5 nods cluster up and running great. Now I want to keep my operating system and apps uptodate…
    I tried: sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade ….it was a miserable fail. I am glad I backed up first, then I tried sudo apt-get upgrade same thing, Where did I go wrong??

    Mike Duncan

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