[Beowulf] slightly [OT] smp boxes

Lawrence Stewart larry.stewart at sicortex.com
Sun Oct 19 22:20:01 EDT 2008

On Oct 19, 2008, at 5:15 PM, Mark Hahn wrote:

>> The SiCortex systems are clusters of 6-core SMPs.  There is no load/ 
>> store access to memory on other nodes, although the interconnect is  
>> fast enough to make software access to remote memory quite  
>> interesting.
> interesting way to put it, since competing interconnects are at  
> least as fast (I'm thinking about the usual IB claim of ~1 us  
> latency).

I see HPCC results around 1.2 usec for Infinipath..  The submissions  
at those sort of timings are pretty thin.
I am embarassed to say we haven't submitted a full run either.

>> I've been coding shmem and GASnet implementations for the SiCortex  
>> interconnect recently, and on the older 500 MHz systems a "put"  
>> takes about 800 ns and a "get" takes a little under  3 microseconds  
>> before any particular
> so the 800ns put is half RTT for two nodes doing ping-pong puts?

No, It is bad scholarship.  That figure is back to back puts, which is  
pretty meaningless.
I expect the latency to be similar to MPI Send+Recv which is around  
1.4.  I'll measure the
half RTT.

>> On the remote-paging side, I put together a prototype that gets  
>> about 2 GB/sec and 64K page fault latencies under 100 microseconds,  
>> again, not optimized.
> ouch.  do you know how much of that time is due to slow MMU  
> interaction?
> (at 2 GB/s, the wiretime for 64k should be 33 us, if I calculate  
> correctly)
The 2 GB figure is aggregate bandwidth of multiple requests using  
multiple rails. Any particular transfer uses only one rail (right now)  
and the latency includes the server's not particularly polished  
thought processes.
>> after all.  I am kind of amused by all the press and angst about  
>> "multicore",
> well, academics need _something_ to motivate grants, and the gov  
> isn't likley to support all the nation's CS depts on gaming  
> research ;)
> also, I suspect intel and perhaps sun have encouraged the brouhaha.

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