Improving Performace by Use of Adaptive Objects: Experimentation with a Configurable Multiprocessor Thread Package
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Operating system kernels typically offer a fixed set of mechanisms and primitives. However, recent research shows that the attainment of high performance for a variety of parallel applications may require the availability of variants of existing primitives or additional low-level mechanisms best suited for specific applications. One approach to addressing this need is to offer an adaptable and extensible operating system kernel. In this paper, we present a model for adaptive objects and associated mechanisms which may be used for the development of high performance operating system kernels for parallel and distributed systems. We use the model to implement a class of multiprocessor locks namely, adaptive locks which adapt themselves according to user-provided adaptation policies to suit any application locking pattern. Using a well-known multiprocessor application, the Travelling Sales Person program, we demonstrate the performance advantage of adaptive locks over existing locks.
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