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Optimal Scheduling and Exact Response Time Analysis for Multistage Jobs

by   Ziv Scully, et al.

Scheduling to minimize mean response time in an M/G/1 queue is a classic problem. The problem is usually addressed in one of two scenarios. In the perfect-information scenario, the scheduler knows each job's exact size, or service requirement. In the zero-information scenario, the scheduler knows only each job's size distribution. The well-known shortest remaining processing time (SRPT) policy is optimal in the perfect-information scenario, and the more complex Gittins index policy is optimal in the zero-information scenario. In real systems the scheduler often has partial but incomplete information about each job's size. We introduce a new job model, that of multistage jobs, to capture the partial-information scenario. A multistage job consists of a sequence of stages, where both the sequence of stages and stage sizes are unknown, but the scheduler always knows which stage of a job is in progress. We give an optimal algorithm for scheduling multistage jobs and an exact response time analysis of our algorithm. As a special case of our analysis, we obtain the first closed-form expression for mean response time under the Gittins index policy in the M/G/1 queue.


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