Managing Overlapping Data Structures for Data-Parallel Applications on Distributed Memory Architectures

Mads Ruben Burgdorff Kristensen ., Brian Vinter .


In this paper, we introduce a model for managing abstract data structures that map to arbitrary distributed memory architectures. It is difficult to achieve scalable performance in data-parallel applications where the programmer manipulates abstract data structures rather than directly manipulating memory. On distributed memory architectures such abstract data-parallel operations may require communication between nodes. Therefore, the underlying system has to handle communication efficiently without any help from the user. Our data model splits data blocks into two sets -- local data and remote data -- and schedules the sub-block by availability at runtime.
We implement the described model in DistNumPy -- a high-productivity programming library for Python. We go on to evaluate the implementation using a representative distributed memory system -- a Cray XE-6 Supercomputer -- up to 2048 cores. The benchmarking results demonstrate scalable good performance.

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