[openstack-hpc] What's the state of openstack-hpc now?

Blair Bethwaite blair.bethwaite at gmail.com
Tue Mar 15 13:54:21 UTC 2016


Apologies for top-posting but I don't intend to answer all the
historical project points you've raised. Regarding old things floating
around on github, your mileage may vary, but I doubt at this point you
want to be looking at any of that in great detail. You haven't really
explained what you mean by or want from HPC in this context, so I'm
guessing a little based on your other questions...

OpenStack is many things to different people and organisations, but at
the software core is a very flexible infrastructure provisioning
framework. HPC requires infrastructure (compute, network, storage),
and OpenStack can certainly deliver it - make your deployment choices
to suit your use-cases. A major choice would be whether you will use
full system virtualisation or bare-metal or containers or <insert next
trend> - that choice largely depends on your typical workloads and
what style of cluster you want. Beyond that, compared to "typical"
cloud hardware - faster CPUs, faster memory, faster network (probably
with much greater east-west capacity), integration of a suitable
parallel file-system.

However, OpenStack is not a HPC management / scheduling / queuing /
middleware system - there are lots of those already and you should
pick one that fits your requirements and then (if it helps) run it
atop an OpenStack cloud (it might help, e.g., if you want to run
multiple logical clusters on the same physical infrastructure, if you
want to mix other more traditional cloud workloads in, if you're just
doing everything with OpenStack like the other cool kids). There are
lots of nuances here, e.g., where one scheduler might lend itself
better to more dynamic infrastructure (adding/removing instances),
another might be lighter-weight for use with a Cluster-as-a-Service
deployment model, whilst another suits a multi-user managed service
style cluster. I'm sure there is good experience and opinion hidden on
this list if you want to interrogate those sorts of choices more

Most of the relevant choices you need to make with respect to running
HPC workloads on infrastructure that is provisioned through OpenStack
will come down to your hypervisor choices. My preference for now is to
stick with the OpenStack community's most popular free OS and
hypervisor (Ubuntu and KVM+Libvirt) - when I facilitated the
hypervisor-tuning ops session at the Vancouver summit (with a bunch of
folks interested in HPC on OpenStack) there was no-one in the room
running a different hypervisor, though several were using RHEL. With
the right tuning KVM can get you to within a hair's breadth of
bare-metal performance for a wide range of CPU, memory and
inter-process comms benchmarks, plus you can easily make use of PCI
passthrough for latency sensitive or "difficult" devices like
NICs/HCAs and GPGPUs. And the "right tuning" is not really some arcane
knowledge, it's mainly about exposing host CPU capabilities, pinning
vCPUs to pCPUs, and tuning or pinning and exposing NUMA topology -
most of this is supported directly through OpenStack-native features

To answer the GPU question more explicitly - yes you can do this.
Mainly you need to ensure you're getting compatible hardware (GPU and
relevant motherboard components) - most of the typical GPGPU choices
(e.g. K80, K40, M60) will work, and you should probably be wary of
PCIe switches unless you know exactly what you're doing (recommend
trying before buying). At the OpenStack level you just define the PCI
devices you want OpenStack Nova to provision and you can then define
custom instance-types/flavors that will get a GPU passed through.
Similar things go for networking.

Lastly, just because you can do this doesn't make it a good idea...
OpenStack is complex, HPC systems are complex, layering one
complicated thing on another is a good way to create tricky problems
that hide in the interface between the two layers. So make sure you're
gaining something from having OpenStack in the mix here.


On 15 March 2016 at 23:00,  <openstack-hpc-request at lists.openstack.org> wrote:
> Message: 1
> Date: Tue, 15 Mar 2016 19:05:38 +0800
> From: "me,apporc" <appleorchard2000 at gmail.com>
> To: openstack-hpc at lists.openstack.org
> Subject: [openstack-hpc] What's the state of openstack-hpc now?
> Message-ID:
>         <CAOBTi0sftGTG-fscM-C5wLu6bTgZMaLaM2eXBJpa0a=vkPDusg at mail.gmail.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"
> Hi, all
> I found this etherpad[1] which was created long time ago, inside which
> there are some blueprints: support-heterogeneous-archs[2],
> heterogeneous-instance-types[3]
> and schedule-instances-on-heterogeneous-architectures[4] .
> But those blueprints had been obselete since year 2014, and some of its
> patches were abandoned.
> There however is a forked branch github[5] or launchpad[6], which is
> diverged far away from nova/trunk, and not updated since 2014 too.
> Is that we just abandoned those blueprints in openstack or else?
> Besides, there is a CaaS[7] project called Senlin[8], which refered to the
> word "HPC" in its wiki. But it seems like not really related. "Cluster" can
> mean many things, but hpc is some kind different.
> I can not get the status of GPU support in nova. As the case of network,
> SR-IOV[9] seems ok. For storage, i don't know what the word "mi2" means in
> etherpad[1].
> According to what i got above, it seems we can not use hpc in openstack
> now. But there are some videos here[10], here[11] and here[12].Since we can
> not get GPU in nova instance, are they just building traditional hpcs
> without GPU?
> I need more information, thanks in advance.
> 1. https://etherpad.openstack.org/p/HVHsTqOQGc
> 2. https://blueprints.launchpad.net/nova/+spec/support-heterogeneous-archs
> 3. https://blueprints.launchpad.net/nova/+spec/heterogeneous-instance-types
> 4.
> https://blueprints.launchpad.net/nova/+spec/schedule-instances-on-heterogeneous-architectures
> 5. https://github.com/usc-isi/nova
> 6. https://code.launchpad.net/~usc-isi/nova/hpc-trunk
> 7. https://wiki.openstack.org/wiki/CaaS
> 8. https://wiki.openstack.org/wiki/Senlin
> 9. https://wiki.openstack.org/wiki/SR-IOV-Passthrough-For-Networking
> 10.
> https://www.openstack.org/summit/vancouver-2015/summit-videos/presentation/openstack-in-hpc-operations-a-campus-perspective
> 11.
> https://www.openstack.org/summit/tokyo-2015/videos/presentation/hpc-on-openstack-use-cases
> 12.
> https://www.openstack.org/summit/tokyo-2015/videos/presentation/canonical-hpc-and-openstack-from-real-experience
> --
> Regards,
> apporc
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