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Using overdecomposition to overlap communication latencies with computation and take advantage of SMT processors

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5 Author(s)
Bongo, L.A. ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., Tromso Univ. ; Vinter, B. ; Anshus, O.J. ; Larsen, T.
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Parallel programs running on clusters are typically decomposed and mapped to run with one thread per processor each working on its disjoint subset of the data. We evaluate performance improvements and limitations for a micro-benchmark and the NAS benchmarks, by using overdecomposition to map multiple threads to each processor to overlap computation with communication. The experiment platform is a cluster with Pentium 4 symmetric multithreading (SMT) processor nodes interconnected through gigabit Ethernet. Micro-benchmark results demonstrate execution time improvements up to 1.8. However, for the NAS benchmarks overdecomposition and SMT provides only slight performance gains, and sometimes significant performance loss. We evaluated improvement and limitation sensitivity to problem size, communication structure and whether SMT is enabled or not. We found that performance improvements are limited by applications having communication dependencies that limit thread-level parallelism, increase in cache misses, or increased systems activity. Our study contributes a better understanding of these limitations

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Parallel Processing Workshops, 2006. ICPP 2006 Workshops. 2006 International Conference on

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