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The POST Project - Technical Summary

Many application requirements can be satisfied by modest levels of parallelism, such as that provided by shared-memory multiprocessor workstations (SMPs). The market for SMPs, which are also increasingly deployed as nodes of large-scale parallel computers is growing steadily. This has lead to the definition of an industry standard for portable shared memory programming. Called OpenMP, it has been adopted by most major vendors, and implementations have been quick to appear. It is the first portable shared memory API.

Tool developers in POST will modify and extend an existing state-of-the-art tool for parallel application development to target OpenMP. The end users will use the POST environment to create OpenMP applications and will compare them with similar MPI-based code development. Scalability of OpenMP-based approaches on large-scale systems will be investigated and findings will be reported to the OpenMP consortium.

The environment created in POST will have a unique range of features to enable the creation and maintenance of OpenMP programs.

Goals of the POST project

  • Support rapid take-up of the new OpenMP standard.
  • Extend its range of applicability by supporting programs written in a combination of OpenMP and MPI.
  • Validate the features and functionality of this tool by a close cooperation with several application developers with a variety of programming needs.
  • Liaise with the OpenMP consortium.
  • Demonstrate the benefits of OpenMP by creating and assessing OpenMP versions of two industrial applications and a benchmark of complex code.
  • Increase the awareness of this API among European software vendors.
  • Investigate the scalability of OpenMP-based approaches to large-scale computing.

©1999 The POST Project