Canaries in a Coal Mine: Using Application-Level Checkpoints to Detect Memory Failures

PM Widener and KB Ferreira and S Levy and N Fabian, EURO-PAR 2015: PARALLEL PROCESSING WORKSHOPS, 9523, 669-681 (2015).

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-27308-2_54

Memory failures in future extreme scale applications are a significant concern in the high-performance computing community and have attracted much research attention. We contend in this paper that using application checkpoint data to detect memory failures has potential benefits and is preferable to examining application memory. To support this contention, we describe the application of machine learning techniques to evaluate the veracity of checkpoint data. Our preliminary results indicate that supervised decision tree machine learning approaches can effectively detect corruption in restart files, suggesting that future extreme-scale applications and systems may benefit from incorporating such approaches in order to cope with memory failures.

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