Heterogeneous Channel Bonding Revisited

D. Andresen and S. Hanenkamp (USA)


Network performance, Linux, heterogeneous channel bonding, Beowulf.


Efficient communication in distributed systems is es sential for optimal system performance. As parallel computation develops, many different kinds of mes sages need to be sent between machines. These mes sages may have different requirements for network la tency and bandwidth. In this paper, we revisit com bining two physical interfaces into one virtual network (channel bonding).In contrast with most existing im plementations, we communicate via heterogenous in terfaces, and explore a number of more sophisticated scheduling algorithms than the round-robin technique used in the standard Beowulf channel-bonding driver. We explore the relative tradeoffs of interface schedul ing overhead versus the additional bandwidth possible with multiple interfaces. Using both Gigabit Ether net and Fast Ethernet Networks, we evaluate system performance using netPerf. We show significant per formance gains for small messages, with incremental improvements for larger packets.

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