AIWC: OpenCL based Architecture Independent Workload Characterisation

05/10/2018 ∙ by Beau Johnston, et al. ∙ 0

OpenCL is an attractive programming model for high-performance computing systems composed of heterogeneous compute devices, with wide support from hardware vendors allowing portability of application codes. For accelerator designers and HPC integrators, understanding the performance characteristics of scientific workloads is of utmost importance. However, if these characteristics are tied to architectural features that are specific to a particular system, they may not generalize well to alternative or future systems. An architecture-independent method ensures an accurate characterization of inherent program behaviour, without bias due to architectural-dependent features that vary widely between different types of accelerators. This work presents the first architecture-independent workload characterization framework for heterogeneous compute platforms. The tool, AIWC, is capable of characterizing OpenCL workloads currently in use in the supercomputing setting and is deployed as part of the open source Oclgrind simulator. An evaluation of the metrics collected over a subset of the Extended OpenDwarfs Benchmark Suite is also presented.

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