Improving I/O Forwarding Throughput with Data Compression

B Welton and D Kimpe and J Cope and CM Patrick and K Iskra and R Ross, 2011 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON CLUSTER COMPUTING (CLUSTER), 438-445 (2011).

DOI: 10.1109/CLUSTER.2011.80

While network bandwidth is steadily increasing, it is doing so at a much slower rate than the corresponding increase in CPU performance. This trend has widened the gap between CPU and network speed. In this paper, we investigate improvements to I/O performance by exploiting this gap. We harness idle CPU resources to compress network traffic, reducing the amount of data transferred over the network and increasing effective network bandwidth. We created a set of compression services within the I/O Forwarding Scalability Layer. These services transparently compress and decompress data as it is transferred over the network. We studied the effect of the compression services on a variety of data sets and conducted experiments on a high-performance computing cluster.

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