Single System Image: Need, Approaches, and Supporting HPC Systems

High performance computing on proprietary or commodity hardware is gaining wide acceptance. For this to be practicable, it is important that systems provide a single system image at any one (or more) of the following levels: Hardware, Operating System, Message Passing Interfaces, Language/Compiler, or Tools. Single-system image greatly enhances the programs portability and at the same time increases the availability of a wide range of software (tools or applications). An operating system can exhibit single-system image by supporting a parallel file system, parallel commands, multi-user and multithreaded kernel for single/multi-user machine. The operating system should incorporate all these features without additional primitives or commands but having the same existing formats. This paper presents the needs and approaches for building a single system image, and a survey of systems supporting single-system image.
Keywords: Network, Parallel, Distributed, NOW, COW, Operating Systems, Single System Image

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Appreared in: The International Conference on Parallel and Distributed Processing Techniques and Applications (PDPTA'97); June 30 - July 3, 1997; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.