Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Can OpenMP be supported on the EGEE Grid?

Following a hack made about a month ago on the GRAM module the question still remains open. Is it possible to run OpenMP parallelized code on the production EGEE Infrastructure? The answer is still 'yes and no'. It is yes, because one can either use preproduction services such as the Cream CE or adopt to hacked versions of the GRAM module of the PBS server and it is no because none of the above can claim to be of production quality -at least for the moment they can't.

It thus looks like it is an open race where tech gurus and developers may compete against in the near future over best practices in the adaptation of shared memory parallelism on a Grid infrastructure.

The most important issue to address in this informal competition is IMHO how to connect information stemming from the user on the UI across the WMS service onto the gatekeeper on the CE and finally onto the PBS service. Actually, the one to succeed in this task will not only have solved and addressed the issue of running shared memory parallel applications on a production Grid but moreover the issue of exploiting the Infrastructure in the exact accordance of one's needs.

In example, memory requirements or wall-clock time estimations may then be adapted by the users of the infrastructure thus allowing more memory demanding jobs to be executed on specific machinery of the infrastructure and for backfilling mechanisms to be implemented.

One can only begin to imagine the boost in robustness that such a mechanism may bring to the wider EGEE community. It will lead us from a production infrastructure to a production quality infrastructure.