A recent version of the Parallel Virtual Machine (PVM) computer program has been enhanced to enable use of multiple processors in a single node of a Beowulf system (a cluster of personal computers that runs the Linux operating system). A previous version of PVM had been enhanced by addition of a software port, denoted BEOLIN, that enables the incorporation of a Beowulf system into a larger parallel processing system administered by PVM, as though the Beowulf system were a single computer in the larger system. BEOLIN spawns tasks on (that is, automatically assigns tasks to) individual nodes within the cluster. However, BEOLIN does not enable the use of multiple processors in a single node. The present enhancement adds support for a parameter in the PVM command line that enables the user to specify which Internet Protocol host address the code should use in communicating with other Beowulf nodes. This enhancement also provides for the case in which each node in a Beowulf system contains multiple processors. In this case, by making multiple references to a single node, the user can cause the software to spawn multiple tasks on the multiple processors in that node.

This work was done by Paul Springer of Caltech for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. For further information, access the Technical Support Package (TSP) free on-line at www.techbriefs.com/tsp under the Semiconductors & ICs category.

The software used in this innovation is available for commercial licensing. Please contact Karina Edmonds of the California Institute of Technology at (818) 393-2827. Refer to NPO-41706.

This Brief includes a Technical Support Package (TSP).
PVM Enhancement for Beowulf Multiple-Processor Nodes

(reference NPO-41706) is currently available for download from the TSP library.

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This article first appeared in the January, 2006 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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