[Spread-users] Question on Spread for high performance database application

Greg Shebert gshebert at efs-us.com
Tue Feb 7 11:15:53 EST 2006

Hi Shilpa

I'm not sure why you would want to use spread if the large majority of 
your communication needs are point-to-point.  Although possible, spread was
designed to facilitate many-to-many and one-to-many communication needs.

Others on this mailing list have recently pointed out that a network of 
spread nodes can introduce significant delay as well as client 
disconnection problems under heavy load / high-throughput situations.  
It simply is not designed to address this scenario but, rather, more 
general purpose (and lower bandwidth) needs such as your cluster membership.

Why not use spread for your cluster membership and another solution for 
your high-throughput point-to-point needs?

I do not know of any studies comparing spread to MPI.


Shilpa Lawande wrote:

>We are evaluating Spread as a replacement for MPI for a high data
>throughput database application running on a cluster of Linux boxes
>with GigE as interconnect.  Our application may need to scale anywhere
>from several hundred to 1000 nodes.
>Specifically, we are considering Spread for foll purposes :
>a) Providing us cluster membership service. This is where MPI
>currently fails us as it is not tolerant to a node in a cluster going
>down.  Spread is a clear choice here.
>b) For point-to-point communication between nodes.  The alternative
>for us is to roll out our own using vanilla TCP sockets.  Significant
>portion of our data traffic is point-to-point and we need high data
>throughput here. We are concerned by the extra hop of going through
>the Spread daemon.
>Some questions we have are:
>a) Are there any studies on network performance of Spread vs sockets
>for large amounts of data transfer ?
>b) How much overhead might Spread introduce in terms of CPU usage ?
>c) There is a limit of 128 Spread daemons. This means we may need to have
>one daemon for a set of nodes in our cluster. What is the impact of
>the daemon running on same node as client vs. another ?
>d) Are there any studies comparing Spread to MPI ?
>We are doing our own experiments to answer these questions but it
>would be great to hear other experiences or general comments on
>suitability of Spread for this type of an application.
>Thank you for your help!
>Shilpa Lawande.
>Spread-users mailing list
>Spread-users at lists.spread.org

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