Before joining PlanetLab, your site agrees to dedicate at least two server-class machines (called nodes) to the PlanetLab network. The machines are exclusively devoted to PlanetLab operations, and all data on the nodes are erased as part of the installation process.
A PlanetLab node is a fairly standard 1U rack-mounted server with a network-addressable power control unit. However, as server technology is constantly evolving, it is important that the specific requirements be finalized soon after the date of purchase. We target 1000 Euro per server, prior to taking into account institutional overheads and unused amortization of equipment.
Requirements have been discussed between two authorities: PlanetLab Europe and PlanetLab Central.