Welcome!

News Feed Item

Fujitsu Laboratories Develops Technology to Reduce Network Switches in Cluster Supercomputers by 40%

Maintains network performance, lowers energy consumption

Tokyo, July 15, 2014 - (JCN Newswire) - Fujitsu Laboratories Ltd. today announced that it has developed a technology that reduces the number of network switches used in a cluster supercomputer(1) system comprised of several thousand units by 40% while maintaining the same level of network performance.

Existing cluster supercomputers typically use a "fat tree" network topology(2), in which, for example, 6,000 servers would require about 800 switches, or possibly more than 2,000 switches, with network performance that needs redundancy and other features. Networks account for up to about 20% of the power consumed by a supercomputer system, which means there are high expectations for a new network technology that can maintain good network performance with fewer switches.

Fujitsu Laboratories has used a multi-layer full mesh topology in combination with a newly developed communications algorithm that controls transmission sequences to avoid data collisions. This means that, even in all-to-all communications, which are prone to bottlenecks during application execution, performance stays on par with existing technology while using roughly 40% fewer switches, saving energy without sacrificing performance.

Details of this technology are being presented at the Summer United Workshops on Parallel, Distributed and Cooperative Processing 2014 (SWoPP 2014), opening July 28 in Niigata City, Japan.

Background

Cluster supercomputers have been widely used in the fields of manufacturing, such as for the design of mobile phones, cars, and airplanes, as well as scientific technology computing. Increasingly, though, they are being used in new areas, such as in in silico drug discovery and medicine, and to analyze earthquakes and weather phenomena, and these applications require even more powerful supercomputers.

To realize increased supercomputing performance, multiple servers are connected by networks. These servers are equipped with high-performance computation units consisting of accelerators that are typically many-core processors which have multiple CPUs or GPGPUs(3)

Technological Issues

In order for the supercomputer's computing performance to be useful to a wide range of applications, the network joining the servers needs to have higher performance. In the fat-tree network topology, tiers are set based on the extent of the servers being connected, and the redundancy of paths in the tree-like network topology that connects the switches results in fast network performance. For example, a system with 6,000 servers would require 800 switches, each with 36 ports, to connect them.

Thanks to the redundancy of routes in the fat-tree topology, when running a fast Fourier transform, for example, as part of an analysis on a cluster supercomputer, all-to-all communications among the servers shows good network performance. Meanwhile, many-core processors in individual servers or accelerators such as GPGPUs produce dramatic jumps in performance. Network performance needs to be improved so that it stays balanced with computational performance, and this requires many more switches, but increasing the number of switches entails the problem of higher costs for materials, electric power, and installed space.

About the Technology

What Fujitsu Laboratories has done is to develop a technology that can accommodate a large number of servers with relatively few switches by considering what would be an optimized data-exchange process, then connecting the cluster in a new way. This reduces the number of switches needed to connect a given number of nodes by roughly 40% compared to a fat-tree network topology while maintaining equivalent performance levels under the maximum-load communication pattern of all-to-all communications.

Key features of the technology are as follows.

1. Multi-layer full-mesh network topology

Fujitsu Laboratories developed a structure where switches for indirect connections are arrayed around the periphery of a full-mesh framework that connects all switches directly, and multiple full-mesh structures are connected to each other. Compared to a three-layer fat-tree network topology, this eliminates an entire layer of switches, with switch ports being used more efficiently and a smaller number of switches in use.

2.Data-exchange process avoids path contention

In all-to-all communications, where each server is exchanging data with every other server, reducing the number of switches also reduces the number of paths between servers, which is likely to result in collisions. Fujitsu Laboratories was able to achieve all-to-all communications performance on par with a fat-tree topology by taking advantage of the multi-layer full mesh network topology in the process of transferring data between servers. By using scheduling, servers connected to the various apex switches (A through F) will divert to a different apex, and also by avoid collisions within paths that traverse different layers (a1 through d3).

Results

This technology makes it possible to maintain the performance of large-scale cluster supercomputers that are needed for such applications as drug discovery and medicine, and to analyze earthquakes and weather phenomena, while lowering facility costs and power costs. This thereby enables the provision of supercomputers that achieve high performance while conserving energy.

Future Plans

Fujitsu Laboratories plans to have a practical implementation of this technology during fiscal 2015. It also plans to continue research into topologies for large-scale computing systems that do not depend on increasing numbers of switches.

Note:

(1) Cluster supercomputer

A supercomputer made up of numerous PC servers connected by a high-speed network.

(2) Fat tree topology

A network topology that follows a basic tree-like structure, with multiplexed higher layers. A key benefit of this topology is that it avoids network congestion.

(3) GPGPU

A "general-purpose graphic processing unit" is a specialized processor for not only image processing, but has other uses as well as it has the ability to perform certain kinds of calculations very quickly. This has made them increasingly popular in supercomputers recently.

About Fujitsu Limited

Fujitsu is the leading Japanese information and communication technology (ICT) company offering a full range of technology products, solutions and services. Approximately 170,000 Fujitsu people support customers in more than 100 countries. We use our experience and the power of ICT to shape the future of society with our customers. Fujitsu Limited (TSE: 6702) reported consolidated revenues of 4.4 trillion yen (US$47 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2013 For more information, please see www.fujitsu.com.



Source: Fujitsu Limited

Contact:
Fujitsu Limited
Public and Investor Relations
www.fujitsu.com/global/news/contacts/
+81-3-3215-5259


Copyright 2014 JCN Newswire. All rights reserved. www.japancorp.net

More Stories By JCN Newswire

Copyright 2008 JCN Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of JCN Newswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of JCN Newswire. JCN Newswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloudistics, an on-premises cloud computing company, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cloudistics delivers a complete public cloud experience with composable on-premises infrastructures to medium and large enterprises. Its software-defined technology natively converges network, storage, compute, virtualization, and management into a ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Infranics will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Since 2000, Infranics has developed SysMaster Suite, which is required for the stable and efficient management of ICT infrastructure. The ICT management solution developed and provided by Infranics continues to add intelligence to the ICT infrastructure through the IMC (Infra Management Cycle) based on mathemat...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Loom Systems will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Founded in 2015, Loom Systems delivers an advanced AI solution to predict and prevent problems in the digital business. Loom stands alone in the industry as an AI analysis platform requiring no prior math knowledge from operators, leveraging the existing staff to succeed in the digital era. With offices in ...
Virtualization over the past years has become a key strategy for IT to acquire multi-tenancy, increase utilization, develop elasticity and improve security. And virtual machines (VMs) are quickly becoming a main vehicle for developing and deploying applications. The introduction of containers seems to be bringing another and perhaps overlapped solution for achieving the same above-mentioned benefits. Are a container and a virtual machine fundamentally the same or different? And how? Is one techn...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftLayer, an IBM Company, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. SoftLayer, an IBM Company, provides cloud infrastructure as a service from a growing number of data centers and network points of presence around the world. SoftLayer’s customers range from Web startups to global enterprises.
Have you ever noticed how some IT people seem to lead successful, rewarding, and satisfying lives and careers, while others struggle? IT author and speaker Don Crawley uncovered the five principles that successful IT people use to build satisfying lives and careers and he shares them in this fast-paced, thought-provoking webinar. You'll learn the importance of striking a balance with technical skills and people skills, challenge your pre-existing ideas about IT customer service, and gain new in...
"I think that everyone recognizes that for IoT to really realize its full potential and value that it is about creating ecosystems and marketplaces and that no single vendor is able to support what is required," explained Esmeralda Swartz, VP, Marketing Enterprise and Cloud at Ericsson, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new da...
Keeping pace with advancements in software delivery processes and tooling is taxing even for the most proficient organizations. Point tools, platforms, open source and the increasing adoption of private and public cloud services requires strong engineering rigor - all in the face of developer demands to use the tools of choice. As Agile has settled in as a mainstream practice, now DevOps has emerged as the next wave to improve software delivery speed and output. To make DevOps work, organization...
SYS-CON Events announced today that T-Mobile will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. As America's Un-carrier, T-Mobile US, Inc., is redefining the way consumers and businesses buy wireless services through leading product and service innovation. The Company's advanced nationwide 4G LTE network delivers outstanding wireless experiences to 67.4 million customers who are unwilling to compromise on ...
What if you could build a web application that could support true web-scale traffic without having to ever provision or manage a single server? Sounds magical, and it is! In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Munns, Senior Developer Advocate for Serverless Applications at Amazon Web Services, will show how to build a serverless website that scales automatically using services like AWS Lambda, Amazon API Gateway, and Amazon S3. We will review several frameworks that can help you build serverle...
Deep learning has been very successful in social sciences and specially areas where there is a lot of data. Trading is another field that can be viewed as social science with a lot of data. With the advent of Deep Learning and Big Data technologies for efficient computation, we are finally able to use the same methods in investment management as we would in face recognition or in making chat-bots. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Gaurav Chakravorty, co-founder and Head of Strategy Development ...
"Peak 10 is a national cloud data center solutions managed services provider, and part of that is disaster recovery. We see a growing trend in the industry where companies are coming to us looking for assistance in their DR strategy," stated Andrew Cole, Director of Solutions Engineering at Peak 10, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
The essence of cloud computing is that all consumable IT resources are delivered as services. In his session at 15th Cloud Expo, Yung Chou, Technology Evangelist at Microsoft, demonstrated the concepts and implementations of two important cloud computing deliveries: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS). He discussed from business and technical viewpoints what exactly they are, why we care, how they are different and in what ways, and the strategies for IT to transi...
Culture is the most important ingredient of DevOps. The challenge for most organizations is defining and communicating a vision of beneficial DevOps culture for their organizations, and then facilitating the changes needed to achieve that. Often this comes down to an ability to provide true leadership. As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership abi...