SLINC: A Framework for Volunteer Computing

J. Baldassari, D. Finkel, and D. Toth (USA)


Volunteer computing and distributed computing.


Volunteer computing is an innovative approach to high performance computing that relies on volunteers who donate their personal computers’ unused resources to a computationally intensive research project. Prominent volunteer computing projects include SETI@home, Folding@Home, and The Great Internet Mersenne Prime Search (GIMPS). Many volunteer computing projects are built upon a volunteer computing framework that abstracts functionality that is common to all volunteer computing projects, such as network communications, database access, and project management. These volunteer computing frameworks tend to be complex, limiting, and difficult to use. We have designed and implemented a new volunteer computing framework called the Simple Light-weight Infrastructure for Network Computing (SLINC) that addresses the disadvantages we identified with existing frameworks. SLINC is a flexible and extensible volunteer computing framework that will enable researchers to more easily build volunteer computing projects.

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