Unification of Amdahl's Law, LogP and Other Performance Models for Message-Passing Architectures

N.J. Gunther (USA)

Keywords

Amdahl’s law, grid computing, LogP, MPI, performance analysis, queueing models

Abstract

We examine some well-known but disparate paramet ric performance models that are frequently used for the performance analysis of parallel applications running on message-passing architectures. Examples of such para metric models include: Amdahl’s law, Gustafson’s quasi linearized scaleup, harmonic speedup, and LogP-type mod els. By invoking a paradigm shift to a more general queue theoretic model–the Machine Repairman Model (MRM)— each of these apparently unrelated parametric models is seen to correspond to a particular choice of possible MRM parameter mappings. In this way, all of the above ad hoc parametric models are subsumed by a single unified model which, in turn, simplifies the framework for performance analysis. More significantly, the unified MRM variables offer a way to identify bottlenecks and other sources of performance degradation. Conventional parametric models cannot provide this level of performance information be cause it is lost within their respective parameter values. We demonstrate the advantages of MRM by applying it to the analysis of benchmark measurements on several message passing platforms.

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