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Improving the performance of MPI derived datatypes by optimizing memory-access cost

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4 Author(s)
Byna, S. ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., Illinois Inst. of Technol., Chicago, IL, USA ; Gropp, W. ; Xian-He Sun ; Thakur, R.

The MPI Standard supports derived datatypes, which allow users to describe noncontiguous memory layout and communicate noncontiguous data with a single communication function. This feature enables an MPI implementation to optimize the transfer of noncontiguous data. In practice, however, few MPI implementations implement derived datatypes in a way that performs better than what the user can achieve by manually packing data into a contiguous buffer and then calling an MPI function. In this paper, we present a technique for improving the performance of derived datatypes by automatically using packing algorithms that are optimized for memory-access cost. The packing algorithms use memory-optimization techniques that the user cannot apply easily without advanced knowledge of the memory architecture. We present performance results for a matrix-transpose example that demonstrate that our implementation of derived datatypes significantly outperforms both manual packing by the user and the existing derived-datatype code in the MPI implementation (MPICH).

Published in:

Cluster Computing, 2003. Proceedings. 2003 IEEE International Conference on

Date of Conference:

1-4 Dec. 2003

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