[Beowulf] AMD performance (was 500GB systems)

Reuti reuti at staff.uni-marburg.de
Fri Jan 11 05:59:26 PST 2013


Am 11.01.2013 um 14:22 schrieb Vincent Diepeveen:

> On Jan 11, 2013, at 6:03 AM, Bill Broadley wrote:
> 
>> 
>> Over the last few months I've been hearing quite a few negative  
>> comments
>> about AMD.  Seems like most of them are extrapolating from desktop
>> performance.
>> 
>> Keep in mind that it's quite a stretch going from a desktop (single
>> socket, 2 memory channels) to a server (dual socket, 4x the cores, 8
>> memory channels).
>> 
> 
> Bill - a 2 socket system doesn't deliver 512GB ram.

Maybe I get it wrong, but I was checking these machines recently:

IBM's x3550 M4 goes up to 768 GB with 2 CPUs http://public.dhe.ibm.com/common/ssi/ecm/en/xsd03131usen/XSD03131USEN.PDF

IBM's x3950 X5 goes up to 3 TB with their MAX-5 extension using 4 CPUs, so I assume 1.5 TB with 2 CPUs could work too http://public.dhe.ibm.com/common/ssi/ecm/en/xsd03054usen/XSD03054USEN.PDF

-- Reuti


> Your compare at 2 socket domain doesn't make sense for someone who  
> needs 512GB ram,
> the performance of 4 socket systems is total different from 2.
> 
> [snip]
>> 
>> I figured I'd add a few comments:
>> * Latency for a quad socket AMD is around 64ns to a random piece
>>  of memory (not 600ns as recently mentioned).
> 
> I wrote a testprogram for this in 2003.
> 
> You have no idea what TLB trashing accesses are obviously at the  
> hundreds of gigabyte area.
> 
> There is 0 cheap systems on the planet where you can get a bunch of  
> random bytes in 64 ns
> from a random spot out of 500GB of RAM, a memory line you previously  
> hadn't opened yet and
> which with sureness isn't in the cache yet. You will be looking at   
> 400+ ns latencies bestcase.
> 
> You won't get it faster at any platform which is affordable (of  
> course 512GB of SRAM would be faster,
> yet let's not go into theoretic discussions here - as you can't  
> afford 512GB of SRAM).
> 
>> * AMD quad sockets with 512GB ram start around $9k ($USA)
> 
> You can easily build one with new components from ebay for $2k. Then  
> add the 512GB ram price to that.
> New from a shop the AMD stuff is dirt cheap as well, as a single core  
> ain't fast of course of the new bulldozer line,
> offers fully assembled and everything ready working is around $6k  
> mark - excluding 512GB ram of course.
> 
> Yet it has better latency to a 512 GB block of RAM than intels 4  
> socket systems.
> 
> And that will be many many hundreds of nanoseconds of course.
> 
>> * With OpenMP, pthreads, MPI or other parallel friendly code a quad
>>  socket amd can look up random cache line approximately every 2.25ns.
>>  (64 threads banging on 16 memory channels at once).
> 
> You still didn't get the picture of TLB trashing software huh?
> 
> It reads each time from a random memory location. Only at the end of  
> the calculation the search space converges a tad,
> but still it's random.
> 
> A measurement i have from a tad older 8 socket intel box here is 700  
> ns for similar TLB trashing behaviour.
> 
>> * I've seen no problems with the AMD memory system, in general
>>  the 2k pin/4 memory bus amd sockets seem to performance similarly
>>  to Intel.
> 
> For random accesses at a single or 2 sockets there is huge  
> differences (all cores busy).
> 
> Intel single socket around 90 ns for my benchmark and bulldozer  
> single socket around 150-170 ns ( 8 cores busy).
> 
> You really have no idea what 'random' reads are.
> 
>> 
>> And example of AMD's bandwidth scaling on a quad socket with 64 cores:
>>  http://cse.ucdavis.edu/bill/pstream/bm3-all.png
>> 
>> I don't have a similar Intel, but I do have a dual socket e5:
>>  http://cse.ucdavis.edu/bill/pstream/e5-2609.png
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
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