Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Bug repellent for supercomputers proves effective

15.11.2012
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) researchers have used the Stack Trace Analysis Tool (STAT), a highly scalable, lightweight tool to debug a program running more than one million MPI processes on the IBM Blue Gene/Q (BGQ)-based Sequoia supercomputer.

The debugging tool is a significant milestone in LLNL's multi-year collaboration with the University of Wisconsin (UW), Madison and the University of New Mexico (UNM) to ensure supercomputers run more efficiently.

Playing a significant role in scaling up the Sequoia supercomputer, STAT, a 2011 R&D 100 Award winner, has helped both early access users and system integrators quickly isolate a wide range of errors, including particularly perplexing issues that only manifested at extremely large scales up to 1,179,648 compute cores. During the Sequoia scale-up, bugs in applications as well as defects in system software and hardware have manifested themselves as failures in applications. It is important to quickly diagnose errors so they can be reported to experts who can analyze them in detail and ultimately solve the problem.

"STAT has been indispensable in this capacity, helping the multi-disciplined integration team keep pace with the aggressive system scale-up schedule," said LLNL computer scientist Greg Lee.

"While testing a subsystem of Blue/Gene Q, my test program consistently failed only when scaled to 1,179,648 MPI processes. Although the test program was simple, the sheer scale at which this program ran made debugging efforts highly challenging. But when I applied STAT, it quickly revealed that one particular rank process was consistently stuck in a system call," said Dong Ahn, a computer scientist in Livermore Computing.

Based on this finding, a system expert took a close look at the compute core on which this rank process was running and discovered a hardware defect. "Replacing the component suddenly got the entire Sequoia system back to life," Ahn said. "Putting this exercise into perspective, this error was due to a defect in a tiny hardware unit, the decrementor, of a single hardware thread out of a total of 4.7 million hardware threads. I felt it was like finding a needle in a haystack over a coffee break."

Sequoia delivers 20 petaflops of peak power and was ranked No. 1 in June of this year's TOP500 list. It is currently ranked No. 2, behind Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Titan.

LLNL plans to use Sequoia's impressive computational capability to advance understanding of fundamental physics and engineering questions that arise in the National Nuclear Security Administration's (NNSA) program to ensure the safety, security and effectiveness of the United States' nuclear deterrent without testing. Sequoia also will support NNSA/DOE programs at LLNL that focus on nonproliferation, counterterrorism, energy, security, health and climate change.

As LLNL takes delivery of the Sequoia system and works to move it into production, computer scientists will migrate applications that have been running on earlier systems to this newer architecture. This is a period of intense activity for LLNL's application teams as they gain experience with the new hardware and software environment.

"Having a highly effective debugging tool that scales to the full system is vital to the installation and acceptance process for Sequoia. It is critical that our development teams have a comprehensive parallel debugging tool set as they iron out the inevitable issues that come up with running on a new system like Sequoia," said Kim Cupps, leader of the Livermore Computing Division at LLNL.

STAT is particularly important for LLNL because supercomputer simulations are essential in virtually every mission area of the Laboratory. The tool also has been used at other sites and proved to be effective on a wide range of supercomputer platforms, including Linux clusters and Cray systems.

The team is actively pursuing further optimization of STAT technologies and is exploring commercialization strategies. More information about STAT, including a link to the source code, is available on the Web.

More Information
STAT
ASC Sequoia
Early science runs prepare Lawrence Livermore National Lab's Sequoia for national security missions

LLNL news release, Nov. 9, 2012

"Venturing into the heart of high-performance computing simulations"
Science & Technology Review, September 2012
Founded in 1952, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory provides solutions to our nation's most important national security challenges through innovative science, engineering and technology. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is managed by Lawrence Livermore National Security, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration.

Anne Stark | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.llnl.gov

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Deep Learning predicts hematopoietic stem cell development
21.02.2017 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt

nachricht Sensors embedded in sports equipment could provide real-time analytics to your smartphone
16.02.2017 | University of Illinois College of Engineering

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

New risk factors for anxiety disorders

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

MWC 2017: 5G Capital Berlin

24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>