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Intro to Distributed Erlang (screencast)

Intro to Distributed Erlang (screencast)

On March 27, 2012, in Erlang, by bryanhunter

Here’s an introduction to distribution in Erlang. This screencast demonstrates creating three Erlang nodes on a Windows box and one on a Linux box and then connecting them using the one-liner “net_adm:ping” to form a mighty compute cluster.

Topics covered:

  • Using erl to start an Erlang node (an instance of the Erlang runtime system).
  • How to use net_adm:ping to connect four Erlang nodes (three on Windows, one on Linux).
  • Using rpc:call to RickRoll a Linux box from an Erlang node running on a Windows box.
  • Using nl to load (deploy) a module from one node to all connected nodes.

For a deeper dive into distributed Erlang here’s the official reference (http://www.erlang.org/doc/reference_manual/distributed.html)

Special treat: If you ever wondered how I talk when I’m very sleepy here’s your big chance. :)


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  • Jeff Bell

    Nice video. Big fan of OJ and now I’ve found another Erlang Evangalist! Keep em coming!

  • Anonymous

    Love it! Thanks for getting this out there. I would like to see the Rick-roll replace Hello World as the canonical language intro.

  • Pingback: Intro to Distributed Erlang (screencast) « Another Word For It

  • Uttam [ India ]

    Love to watch, quite simple and understandable. Expecting more topics…… Thanks

  • Ian Felton

    It was interesting what happend when you have a hyphen in your computer name.

    • Anonymous

      Thanks for the comment Ian. Yep, if your computer name or node name has a hyphen you will need to wrap the atom you are passing to net_adm:ping with single quotes.

      This fails:
      (dog@ishmael)1> net_adm:ping(atom-smasher@ishmael).
      ** exception error: bad argument in an arithmetic expression
      in operator -/2
      called as atom – smasher@ishmael

      This works:
      (dog@ishmael)2> net_adm:ping(‘atom-smasher@ishmael’).


      “An atom is a literal, a constant with name. An atom should be enclosed in single quotes (‘) if it does not begin with a lower-case letter or if it contains other characters than alphanumeric characters, underscore (_), or @.”
      -from http://www.erlang.org/doc/reference_manual/data_types.html#id66276

  • http://twitter.com/ToJans Tom * suǝssuɐſ

    Hey Bryan,

    I just got to your site by googling for CQRS/Erlang… I am looking forward to furhter screencasts, as this is great material!