Project

ACTiCLOUD

Goal: ACTiCLOUD’s vision is to develop a novel cloud architecture that will break the existing scale-up and share-nothing barriers and enable the holistic management of physical resources both at the local cloud site and the distributed levels, targeting drastically improved utilization and scalability of resources. This will ultimately translate to:

a) significant cost and performance improvements for CSPs,

b) higher performance stability and lower pricing for cloud applications, and

c) enhanced flexibility and scalability of cloud resources for intensive database applications that have until now faced tough challenges in covering their resource demands from existing cloud offerings.

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Project log

Vasileios Karakostas
added 5 research items
Cloud service providers (CSPs) rely mostly on simplistic and conservative policies regarding resource management, to minimize interference of shared resources between multiple VMs and to provide acceptable performance. However, such approaches may lead to suboptimal allocation and resource underutilization. In this demonstration we present ACTiManager, an end-to-end interference-aware manager for cloud resources. Our preliminary results compared to vanilla OpenStack are promising in terms of CSPs' profit while also retaining average user's satisfaction in the set of top priorities.
Workload consolidation has been shown to achieve improved resource utilisation in modern datacentres. In this paper we focus on the extended problem of allocating resources when co-locating High-Priority (HP) and Best-Effort (BE) applications. Current approaches either neglect this prioritisation and focus on maximising the utilisation of the server or favour HP execution resulting to severe performance degradation for BEs. We propose DICER, a novel, practical, dynamic cache partitioning scheme that adapts the LLC allocation to the needs of the HP and assigns spare cache resources to the BEs. Our evaluation reveals that DICER successfully increases the system's utilisation, while at the same time minimising the impact of co-location on HP's performance.
Despite their proliferation as a dominant computing paradigm, cloud computing systems lack effective mechanisms to manage their vast resources efficiently. Resources are stranded and fragmented, limiting cloud applicability only to classes of applications that pose moderate resource demands. In addition, the need for reduced cost through consolidation introduces performance interference, as multiple VMs are co-located on the same nodes. To avoid such issues, current providers follow a rather conservative approach regarding resource management that leads to significant underutilization. ACTiCLOUD is a three-year Horizon 2020 project that aims at creating a novel cloud architecture that breaks existing scale-up and share-nothing barriers and enables the holistic management of physical resources, at both local and distributed cloud site levels. This extended abstract provides a brief overview of the resource management part of ACTiCLOUD, focusing on the design principles and the components.
Christos Kotselidis
added a research item
As the silicon industry moves into deep nanoscale technologies, preserving Mean Time to Failure at acceptable levels becomes a first-order challenge. The operational stress, along with the inefficient power dissipation and the unsustainable thermal thresholds increase the wear-induced failures. As a result, faster wear-out leads to earlier performance degradation with eventual device breakdown. Furthermore, the proliferation of asymmetric multicores is tightly coupled with an increasing susceptibility to variable wear-out rate within the components of processors. This paper investigates the reliability boundaries of asymmetric multicores, which span from embedded systems to high performance computing domains, by performing a continuous-operation reliability assessment. As our experimental analysis illustrates, the variation between the least and the most aged hardware resource equals to 2.6 years. Motivated by this finding, we show that an MTTF-aware, asymmetric configuration prolongs its lifetime by 21%.
Christos Kotselidis
added a research item
In the recent years, we have witnessed an explosion of the usages of Virtual Machines (VMs) which are currently found in desktops, smartphones, and cloud deployments. These recent developments create new research opportunities in the VM domain extending from performance to energy efficiency, and scalability studies. Research into these directions necessitates research frameworks for VMs that provide full coverage of the execution domains and hardware platforms. Unfortunately, the state of the art on Research VMs does not live up to such expectations and lacks behind industrial-strength software, making it hard for the research community to provide valuable insights. This paper presents our work in attempting to tackle those shortcomings by introducing Beehive, our vision towards a modular and seamlessly extensible ecosystem for research on virtual machines. Beehive unifies a number of existing state-of-the-art tools and components with novel ones providing a complete platform for hardware/software co-design of Virtual Machines.
Foivos Zakkak
added a research item
In this paper, we describe our experiences in co-designing a domain-specific compilation stack. Our motivation stems from the missed optimization opportunities we observed while implementing a computer vision library in Java. To tackle the performance shortcomings, we developed Indigo, a computer vision API co-designed with a compilation plugin for optimizing computer vision applications. Indigo exploits the extensible nature of the Graal compiler which provides invocation plugins, that replace methods with dedicated nodes, and generates machine code compatible with both the Java Virtual Machine (JVM) and the SIMD hardware unit. Our approach improves performance by up to 66.75× when compared to pure Java implementations and by up to 2.75× when compared to the original C++ implementation. These performance improvements are the result of low-level concurrency, idiomatic implementation of algorithms, and by keeping temporary objects in the wider vector unit registers.
Christos Kotselidis
added a research item
Despite their proliferation as a dominant computing paradigm, cloud computing systems lack effective mechanisms to manage their vast amounts of resources efficiently. Resources are stranded and fragmented, ultimately limiting cloud systems' applicability to large classes of critical applications that pose non-moderate resource demands. Eliminating current technological barriers of actual fluidity and scalability of cloud resources is essential to strengthen cloud computing's role as a critical cornerstone for the digital economy. ACTiCLOUD proposes a novel cloud architecture that breaks the existing scale-up and share-nothing barriers and enables the holistic management of physical resources both at the local cloud site and at distributed levels. Specifically, it makes advancements in the cloud resource management stacks by extending state-of-the-art hypervisor technology beyond the physical server boundary and localized cloud management system to provide a holistic resource management within a rack, within a site, and across distributed cloud sites. On top of this, ACTiCLOUD will adapt and optimize system libraries and runtimes (e.g., JVM) as well as ACTiCLOUD-native applications, which are extremely demanding, and critical classes of applications that currently face severe difficulties in matching their resource requirements to state-of-the-art cloud offerings.
Christos Kotselidis
added 2 research items
Managed applications, written in programming languages such as Java, C# and others, represent a significant share of workloads in the mobile, desktop, and server domains. Microarchitectural timing simulation of such workloads is useful for characterization and performance analysis, of both hardware and software, as well as for research and development of novel hardware extensions. This paper introduces MaxSim, a simulation platform based on the Maxine VM, the ZSim simulator, and the McPAT modeling framework. MaxSim is able to simulate fast and accurately managed workloads running on top of Maxine VM and its capabilities are showcased with novel simulation techniques for: 1) low-intrusive microarchitectural profiling via pointer tagging on the x86-64 platforms, 2) modeling of hardware extensions related, but not limited to, tagged pointers, and 3) modeling of complex software changes via address-space morphing. Low-intrusive microarchitectural profiling is achieved by utilizing tagged pointers to collect type-and allocation-site-related hardware events. Furthermore, MaxSim allows, through a novel technique called address space morphing, the easy modeling of complex object layout transformations. Finally, through the co-designed capabilities of MaxSim, novel hardware extensions can be implemented and evaluated. We showcase MaxSim's capabilities by simulating the whole set of the DaCapo-9.12-bach benchmarks in less than a day while performing an up-to-date microarchitectural power and performance characterization. Furthermore, we demonstrate a hardware/software co-designed optimization that performs dynamic load elimination for array length retrieval achieving up to 14% L1 data cache loads reduction and up to 4% dynamic energy reduction. MaxSim is available at https://github.com/arodchen/ MaxSim released as free software.
Real-time 3D space understanding is becoming prevalent across a wide range of applications and hardware platforms. To meet the desired Quality of Service (QoS), computer vision applications tend to be heavily parallelized and exploit any available hardware accelerators. Current approaches to achieving real-time computer vision, evolve around programming languages typically associated with High Performance Computing along with binding extensions for OpenCL or CUDA execution. Such implementations, although high performing, lack portability across the wide range of diverse hardware resources and accelerators. In this paper, we showcase how a complex computer vision application can be implemented within a managed runtime system. We discuss the complexities of achieving high-performing and portable execution across embedded and desktop configurations. Furthermore, we demonstrate that it is possible to achieve the QoS target of over 30 frames per second (FPS) by exploiting FPGA and GPGPU acceleration transparently through the managed runtime system.
Foivos Zakkak
added a project goal
ACTiCLOUD’s vision is to develop a novel cloud architecture that will break the existing scale-up and share-nothing barriers and enable the holistic management of physical resources both at the local cloud site and the distributed levels, targeting drastically improved utilization and scalability of resources. This will ultimately translate to:
a) significant cost and performance improvements for CSPs,
b) higher performance stability and lower pricing for cloud applications, and
c) enhanced flexibility and scalability of cloud resources for intensive database applications that have until now faced tough challenges in covering their resource demands from existing cloud offerings.