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Improving Release-Consistent Shared Virtual Memory using Automatic Update

Report ID:
February 1996
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Shared virtual memory is a software technique to provide shared memory
on a network of computers without special hardware support. Although
several relaxed consistency models and implementations are quite
effective, there is still a considerable performance gap between the
``software-only'' approach and the hardware approach that uses
directory-based caches.
Automatic update is a simple communication mechanism, implemented in
the SHRIMP multicomputer, that forwards local
writes to remote memory transparently. In this paper we propose a new lazy
release consistency based protocol, called Automatic Update Release
Consistency (AURC), that uses automatic
update to propagate and merge shared memory modifications. We compare
the performance of this protocol against a software-only LRC
implementation on several Splash-2 applications and show that the
AURC approach can substantially improve the performance of LRC.
For 16 processors, the average speedup has increased from 5.9 under LRC,
to 8.3 under AURC.

This technical report has been published as
Improving Release-Consistent Shared Virtual Memory using
Automatic Update. Liviu Iftode, Cezary Dubnick,
Edward Felten and Kai Li, IEEE 2nd
Internat. Symposium on High-Performance Computer
, February 1996, pp. 14-25.
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