IB vs. Myrinet

Kevin Pedretti ktpedre at sandia.gov
Tue Nov 4 12:35:40 EST 2003


> Subject: IB vs Myrinet
> Date: Mon, 3 Nov 2003 22:19:48 -0500
> From: "Joey Sims" <jsims at csiopen.com>
> I believe IB is a much better interconnect technology than Myrinet
> period.  Plus, you don't have to deal with Myricom.

Things like Myrinet and Quadrics do have at least one architectural advantage 
over IB for HPC -- they have a programmable processor on the NIC.  Myricom's 
MX will, presumably, use the NIC processor to offload MPI receive matching.  
Quadrics Tports also offloads MPI matching.  Offloading theoretically lowers 
host CPU overhead (less interrupts) and lowers latency (less trips across the 
PCI bus).  If Ohio State's MVAPICH really scales beyond 8 nodes well (I've 
only seen 8 node benchmarks), then maybe my point is irrelevant.  Still, in 
my opinion the offload approach is more elegant.  

I've heard some IB HBAs are programmable but there is no standardization and 
documentation is scarce.  Does anybody have more information?

Kevin
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