Meta Process Model: A New Distributed Shared Memory Programming Model

H. Midorikawa (Japan)


Distributed Shared Memory, Parallel Programming, Programming Model, Parallel Language


This paper proposes a new parallel programming model named Meta Process model and MpC language for its API. The Meta Process model is based on a hierarchical shared memory model and is characterized by its explicit parallelism description. On these points, this model is different from either the shared memory model (SMM) or the message passing model (MPM). Meta Process is a coined term that represents a group of cooperative processes to achieve a single application. The Meta Process model introduces shared data that can be accessed by all processes in the Meta Process and distinguishes process-local and process-shared data clearly with using scopes. Processes in a Meta Process share a single address space for shared data. Shared data are maintained by a relaxed memory consistency model. A programmer describes process interactions explicitly using shared data access and synchronizing operations, such as a barrier or a lock/unlock. So this model enables us to write a wide variety of parallel programs, not only SPMD programs like OpenMP/HPF but also irregular and asymmetric programs. The Meta Process model provides us both flexible parallelism description of the MPM and good program readability/writability of the SMM. An actual installation scheme for this model on the software DSM is also described.

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