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Title: Comparing the Performance of Blue Gene/Q with Leading Cray XE6 and InfiniBand Systems

Abstract

Abstract—Three types of systems dominate the current High Performance Computing landscape: the Cray XE6, the IBM Blue Gene, and commodity clusters using InfiniBand. These systems have quite different characteristics making the choice for a particular deployment difficult. The XE6 uses Cray’s proprietary Gemini 3-D torus interconnect with two nodes at each network endpoint. The latest IBM Blue Gene/Q uses a single socket integrating processor and communication in a 5-D torus network. InfiniBand provides the flexibility of using nodes from many vendors connected in many possible topologies. The performance characteristics of each vary vastly along with their utilization model. In this work we compare the performance of these three systems using a combination of micro-benchmarks and a set of production applications. In particular we discuss the causes of variability in performance across the systems and also quantify where performance is lost using a combination of measurements and models. Our results show that significant performance can be lost in normal production operation of the Cray XT6 and InfiniBand Clusters in comparison to Blue Gene/Q.

Authors:
; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1089075
Report Number(s):
PNNL-SA-91632
KJ0403000
DOE Contract Number:  
AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: Proceedings of 18th IEEE International Conference on Parallel and Distributed Systems (ICPADS), December 17-19, 2012, Singapore, 556-563
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
-High Performance Computing, Performance Evaluation, Performance Modeling, Application Analysis

Citation Formats

Kerbyson, Darren J., Barker, Kevin J., Vishnu, Abhinav, and Hoisie, Adolfy. Comparing the Performance of Blue Gene/Q with Leading Cray XE6 and InfiniBand Systems. United States: N. p., 2013. Web. doi:10.1109/ICPADS.2012.81.
Kerbyson, Darren J., Barker, Kevin J., Vishnu, Abhinav, & Hoisie, Adolfy. Comparing the Performance of Blue Gene/Q with Leading Cray XE6 and InfiniBand Systems. United States. doi:10.1109/ICPADS.2012.81.
Kerbyson, Darren J., Barker, Kevin J., Vishnu, Abhinav, and Hoisie, Adolfy. Mon . "Comparing the Performance of Blue Gene/Q with Leading Cray XE6 and InfiniBand Systems". United States. doi:10.1109/ICPADS.2012.81.
@article{osti_1089075,
title = {Comparing the Performance of Blue Gene/Q with Leading Cray XE6 and InfiniBand Systems},
author = {Kerbyson, Darren J. and Barker, Kevin J. and Vishnu, Abhinav and Hoisie, Adolfy},
abstractNote = {Abstract—Three types of systems dominate the current High Performance Computing landscape: the Cray XE6, the IBM Blue Gene, and commodity clusters using InfiniBand. These systems have quite different characteristics making the choice for a particular deployment difficult. The XE6 uses Cray’s proprietary Gemini 3-D torus interconnect with two nodes at each network endpoint. The latest IBM Blue Gene/Q uses a single socket integrating processor and communication in a 5-D torus network. InfiniBand provides the flexibility of using nodes from many vendors connected in many possible topologies. The performance characteristics of each vary vastly along with their utilization model. In this work we compare the performance of these three systems using a combination of micro-benchmarks and a set of production applications. In particular we discuss the causes of variability in performance across the systems and also quantify where performance is lost using a combination of measurements and models. Our results show that significant performance can be lost in normal production operation of the Cray XT6 and InfiniBand Clusters in comparison to Blue Gene/Q.},
doi = {10.1109/ICPADS.2012.81},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2013},
month = {1}
}

Conference:
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