[mpich-discuss] MPICH2-1.0.8 performance issues on Opteron Cluster

Sarat Sreepathi sarat_s at ncsu.edu
Tue Dec 16 17:50:59 CST 2008


We got a new 10-node Opteron cluster in our research group. Each node
has two quad core Opterons. I installed MPICH2-1.0.8 with Pathscale(3.2)
compilers and three device configurations (nemesis,ssm,sock). I built
and tested using the Linpack(HPL) benchmark with ACML 4.2 BLAS library
for the three different device configurations.

I observed some unexpected results as the 'nemesis' configuration gave
the worst performance. For the same problem parameters, the 'sock'
version was faster and the 'ssm' version hangs. For further analysis, I
obtained screenshots from the Ganglia monitoring tool for the three
different runs. As you can see from the attached screenshots, the
'nemesis' version is consuming more 'system cpu' according to Ganglia.
The 'ssm' version fares slightly better but it hangs towards the end.

I may be missing something trivial here but can anyone account for this
discrepancy? Isn't 'nemesis' device or 'ssm' device recommended for this
cluster configuration? Your help is greatly appreciated.


HPL built with AMD ACML 4.2 blas libraries
HPL Output for a problem size N=60000
*nemesis - 1.653e+02 Gflops
ssm - hangs
sock - 2.029e+02 Gflops*

c2master:~ # mpich2version
MPICH2 Version:         1.0.8
MPICH2 Release date:    Unknown, built on Fri Dec 12 16:31:15 EST 2008
MPICH2 Device:          ch3:nemesis
MPICH2 configure:       --with-device=ch3:nemesis --enable-f77
--enable-f90 --enable-cxx
MPICH2 CC:      pathcc -march=opteron -O3
MPICH2 CXX:     pathCC -march=opteron -O3
MPICH2 F77:     pathf90 -march=opteron -O3
MPICH2 F90:     pathf90 -march=opteron -O3

and similar configuration using ch3:ssm and ch3:sock devices.

*> nohup mpiexec  -machinefile ./mf -n 80 ./xhpl < /dev/null &*
*Machine file used:*
> cat mf

c2master:~ # uname -a
Linux c2master #1 SMP 2008-06-09 13:53:20 +0200
x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux
Processor: Quad-Core AMD Opteron(tm) Processor 2350 - 2 GHz

Sarat Sreepathi
Doctoral Student
Dept. of Computer Science
North Carolina State University
sarat_s at ncsu.edu ~ (919)645-7775

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