SC17 Denver, CO

pFlogger: The Parallel Fortran Logging Framework for HPC Applications

Workshop: The 2017 International Workshop on Software Engineering for High Performance Computing in Computational and Data-Enabled Science and Engineering (SE-CoDeSE 2017)
Authors: Thomas Clune (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center)

Abstract: In the context of HPC, software investments in support of text-based diagnostics, which monitor a running application, are typically limited compared to those for other types of IO. Examples of such diagnostics include reiteration of configuration parameters, progress indicators, simple metrics (e.g., mass conservation, convergence of solvers, etc.), and timers. To some degree, this difference in priority is justifiable as other forms of output are the primary products of a scientific model, and, due to their large data volume, much more likely to be a significant performance concern. In contrast, text-based diagnostic content is generally not shared beyond the individual or group running an application and is most often used to troubleshoot when something goes wrong.

We suggest that a more systematic approach enabled by a logging facility (or 'logger') similar to those routinely used by many communities would provide significant value to complex scientific applications. In the context of high-performance computing, an appropriate logger would provide specialized support for distributed and shared-memory parallelism and have low performance overhead. In this presentation, we present our prototype implementation of pFlogger -- a parallel Fortran-based logging framework, and assess its suitability for use in a complex scientific application.

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