Scheduling in heterogeneous virtualised clusters
With all the talk of "virtualisation" of servers to rationalize computer use and reduce energy consumption, it is worth keeping in mind that getting applications to run well on such systems can be difficult. There is a seminar, called at short notice, in Canberra, about this today:
Department of Computer Science, FEIT
The Australian National University
Date: Thursday, 24 April 2008
Time: 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Venue: Room N101, CSIT Building 
Speaker: Muhammad Atif
Title: Scheduling in heterogeneous virtualised clusters
(Thesis Proposal Review seminar)
Clusters of commodity processors are highly heterogeneous in nature. The volume of computation performed by one compute node in the cluster can be drastically different from other nodes due to architectural or communication interconnect differences. The conventional scheduling
solutions do not take detailed heterogeneity aspects into consideration,
and thus are not very effective.
Virtualisation can be utilized to normalize the heterogeneity of a
cluster to some extent. With growing maturity and hardware support, the
performance gap between native and virtualised operating systems is
decreasing making it a good candidate for high performance computing
The concept of live migration of operating systems can be utilized to
maximize the throughput of the compute farm and the turnaround times of
the submitted jobs. This can be done by developing a run-time job
estimation and remapping service capable of determining more optimized
hardware environment for a job at runtime, resulting in high throughput
and improved turnaround times in the compute cluster.
This seminar will discuss the prospects of using virtualisation in HPC
and some proposed solutions. we will also present some early results of
our experiments with virtualised compute clusters and discuss the short-
comings of current Virtualisation solutions with HPC viewpoint.
Muhammad Atif has done Masters in Software Engineering from the National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST), Pakistan. In 2003, he was was awarded the prestigious president's gold medal for his excellent academic record at his university.
He is currently pursuing PhD in the field of Scheduling in High
performance computing from from the Department of Computer Science,
ANU. His research interest includes virtualization of operating systems
and performance estimation in cluster computing. His past research
interests include natural language processing and anomaly detection in
agent based computing.