[Lustre-devel] Oleg/Mike Work on Apps Metrics - FW: Mike Booth week ending 2009.03.15

Michael Booth Michael.Booth at Sun.COM
Tue Mar 31 20:55:10 PDT 2009

On Mar 31, 2009, at 11:35 PM, di wang wrote:

Andreas Dilger wrote:
> If each compute timestep takes 0.1s during IO vs 0.01s without IO and
> you would get 990 timesteps during the write flush in the second case
> until the cache was cleared, vs. none in the first case.  I suspect
> that the overhead of the MPI communication on the Lustre IO is small,
> since the IO will be limited by the OST network and disk bandwidth,
> which is generally a small fraction of the cross-sectional bandwidth.
> This could be tested fairly easily with a real application that is
> doing computation between IO, instead of a benchmark that is only  
> doing
> IO or only sleeping between IO, simply by increasing the per-OSC write
> cache limit from 32MB to e.g. 1GB in the above case (or 2GB to avoid  
> the
> case where 2 processes on the same node are writing to the same OST).
> Then, measure the time taken for the application to do, say, 1M  
> timesteps
> and 100 checkpoints with the 32MB and the 2GB write cache sizes.
Can we implement aio here? for  example  the  aio buffer can be  
treated  different as other dirty buffer, not
being pushed aggressively to server. It seems with buffer_write, the  
user have to deal with fs buffer cache
issue in his application, not sure it is good for them, and we may not  
even output these features to the


(My Opinion) The large size of the I/O request put onto the SeaStar by  
the Lustre client is giving it an artificially high priority.   
Barriers are just a few bytes, the I/Os from the client are in  
megabytes.   SeaStar has no priority in is queue, but  the amount of  
time it takes to clear megabyte request results in a priority that is  
thousands of times more impact on the hardware than the small  
synchronization requests of many collectives.  I am wondering if the  
interference from I/O to computation is more an artifact of message  
size and bursts,  than of congestion or routing inefficiencies in  

If there are hundreds of megabytes of request queued up on the  
network, and there is no priority way to push a barrier or other small  
mpi request up on the queue, it is bound to create a disruption.

To borrow the elevator metaphor from Eric,  if all the elevators are  
queued up from 8:00 to 9:00 delivering office supplies on carts that  
occupy the entire elevator, maybe the carts should be smaller, and  
limited to a few per elevator trip.

Mike Booth

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