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Instrumentation Problems

The Java execution environment with mpiJava poses several challenges to a performance tool developer. The performance model implemented by the tool must embed the hybrid-execution model of the system where multiple Java threads within a virtual machine and multiple MPI (native) processes execute concurrently. One faces two major problems instrumenting a hybrid system consisting of MPI contexts, and Java threads within each of those contexts. The first involves how to expose the thread information to the MPI interface. The second involves how to provide MPI context information to the Java interface. It is necessary to address these problems so events can be tracked in the correct context and thread.

However, different events occur in the different software components (e.g., routine transitions, inter-task message communication, thread scheduling, and user defined events) and performance data should be collected to highlight the different execution modes and the inter-relationship of the software layers. For instance, the event representing a Java thread invoking a message send operation occurs in the JVM, while the actual communication send and receive events take place in compiled native C modules. Ideally, we want the instrumentation inserted in the application, virtual machine, and native language libraries to gather performance data for these events in a uniform and consistent manner. This involves maintaining a common API for performance measurement as well as a common database for multiple sources of performance data within a context of execution.

Below, we present our multi-level instrumentation approach for this parallel Java system using the TAU performance framework. TAU applies instrumentation at both the Java virtual machine level and the MPI library level to capture performance data and associate performance events.

Sameer Suresh Shende
Mon Mar 12 14:44:42 PST 2001