A Reconfiguration Algorithm for Power-Aware Parallel Applications

Abstract

In current computing systems, many applications require guarantees on their maximum power consumption to not exceed the available power budget. On the other hand, for some applications, it could be possible to decrease their performance, yet maintain an acceptable level, in order to reduce their power consumption. To provide such guarantees, a possible solution consists in changing the number of cores assigned to the application, their clock frequency, and the placement of application threads over the cores. However, power consumption and performance have different trends depending on the application considered and on its input. Finding a configuration of resources satisfying user requirements is, in the general case, a challenging task. In this article, we propose Nornir, an algorithm to automatically derive, without relying on historical data about previous executions, performance and power consumption models of an application in different configurations. By using these models, we are able to select a close-to-optimal configuration for the given user requirement, either performance or power consumption. The configuration of the application will be changed on-the-fly throughout the execution to adapt to workload fluctuations, external interferences, and/or application’s phase changes. We validate the algorithm by simulating it over the applications of the Parsec benchmark suit. Then, we implement our algorithm and we analyse its accuracy and overhead over some of these applications on a real execution environment. Eventually, we compare the quality of our proposal with that of the optimal algorithm and of some state-of-the-art solutions

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