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Toward a more realistic performance evaluation of interconnection networks

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2 Author(s)
Ligon, W.B., III ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., Clemson Univ., SC, USA ; Umakishore Ramachandran

lnterconnection network design plays a central role in the design of parallel systems. Most of the previous research has evaluated the performance of interconnection networks in isolation. In this study, we investigate the relationship between application program characteristics and interconnection network performance using an execution driven simulation test bed: the Reconfigurable Architecture Workbench (RAW). We simulate five topological configurations of a k-ary n-cube interconnect and four different network link models for a 4,096 node SIMD machine, and quantify the impact of the network on two application programs. We provide experimental evidence that such “in-context” simulation provides a better view of the impact of network design variables on system performance. We show that recent results, indicating that low-dimensional designs provide better ICN performance, ignore application requirements that may favor high-dimensional designs. Furthermore, applications that would appear to favor low dimensional designs may not, in fact, be significantly impacted by the network's dimensionality. We experimentally test the results of published performance models comparing the use of a synthetic load to that of a load generated by a typical application program

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Parallel and Distributed Systems, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:8 ,  Issue: 7 )