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This paper presents an offloading framework - ORCA - to map I/O-intensive code to a cluster that consists of computing and storage nodes. To reduce data transmission among computing and storage nodes. our offloading framework partitions and schedules CPU-bound and I/O-bound modules to computing nodes and active storage nodes, respectively. From developer's perspective, ORCA helps them to deal with execution-path control, offloading executable code, and data sharing over a network. Powered by the offloading APIs, developers without any I/O offloading or network programming experience are allowed to write new I/O-intensive code running efficiently on clusters. We implement the ORCA framework on a cluster to quantitatively evaluate performance improvements offered by our approach. We run five real-world applications on both homogeneous and heterogeneous computing environments. Experimental results show ORCA speeds up the performance of all the five tested applications by a factor of up to 90.1% with an average of 75.5%. Moreover, the results confirm that ORCA reduces network burden imposed by I/O-intensive applications by a factor of anywhere between 35 to 68.
Date of Conference: 1-3 Dec. 2012