Symmetry and Performance in Consistency Protocols

In The 13th International Conference on Supercomputing (ICS), June 1999.

Pete Keleher

The performance of distributed applications running on software-managed distributed shared memory depends heavily on the amount of synchronous communication activity need to support updates to shared memory. Lazy release consistent protocols generally perform better for page-based systems in such situations because they aggressively postpone communication-related activities as much as possible, hence the "lazy" in the protocol name. However, recent work has shown that the price exacted by laziness, accumulation of protocol state, can outweigh the advantages as systems scale, for some types of applications.

This paper investigates the use of four different lazy protocols, and evaluates them based on performance, scalability, expressiveness, laziness, and complexity of implementation. We find that while the advantages of laziness are considerable, the best combination of virtues is achieved through a scaled approach. Protocols should be adaptive, and only resort to complex mechanisms when simpler approaches are insufficient.

	title = "Symmetry and Performance in Consistency Protocols",
	author = "Pete Keleher",
	booktitle = {The 13th International Conference on Supercomputing (ICS)},
	month = {June},
	year = {1999},

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