PVM (Parallel Virtual Machine) is a portable message-passing programming system, designed to link separate host machines to form a ``virtual machine'' which is a single, manageable computing resource. The virtual machine can be composed of hosts of varying types, in physically remote locations. PVM applications can be composed of any number of separate processes, or components, written in a mixture of C, C++ and Fortran. The system is portable to a wide variety of architectures, including workstations, multiprocessors, supercomputers and PCs.
smartmontools contains utilities that control and monitor storage devices using the Self-Monitoring, Analysis, and Reporting Technology (S.M.A.R.T.) system built into ATA and SCSI hard drives. This is used to check the reliability of the hard drive and to predict drive failures. Version 5.x is designed to comply with the ATA/ATAPI-5 specification. Future releases will comply with the ATA/ATAPI-6 and ATA/ATAPI-7 specifications. It is meant to be an up-to-date replacement for the ucsc-smartsuite and smartsuite packages, and is derived from that code.
GNU VPE creates a virtual ethernet by creating host-to-host tunnels between multiple endpoints. Unlike other virtual private "network" solutions which merely create a single tunnel, it creates a real network with multiple endpoints. It is designed to be conceptually simple and straightforward to setup (assuming prior IP routing knowledge) without sacrificing flexibility. It is designed to sit on the gateway machines of company branches to connect them, but it can also be used to tunnel into a VPN with a variety of protocols (RAW IP, ICMP, UDP, TCP, HTTPS-Proxy, DNS).
distributed.net is a loosely knit group of computer users from all of the world that is taking up challenges requiring lots of computing power (most notably the RC5, DES, and OGR cracking contests). It is simple to participate in the challenges by downloading and running their client software (which uses idle CPU time to complete its tasks).