SC22 Proceedings

The International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage, and Analysis

Technical Papers Archive

Mapping Out the HPC Dependency Chaos

Authors: Farid Zakaria (University of California, Santa Cruz); Thomas Scogland and Todd Gamblin (Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory); and Carlos Maltzahn (University of California, Santa Cruz)

Abstract: High Performance Computing~(HPC) software stacks have become complex, with the dependencies of some applications numbering in the hundreds. Packaging, distributing, and administering software stacks of that scale is a complex undertaking anywhere. HPC systems deal with esoteric compilers, hardware, and a panoply of uncommon combinations.

In this paper, we explore the mechanisms available for packaging software to find its own dependencies in the context of a taxonomy of software distribution, and discuss their benefits and pitfalls. We discuss workarounds for some common problems caused by using these composed stacks and introduce Shrinkwrap: A solution to producing binaries that directly load their dependencies from precise locations and in a precise order. Beyond simplifying the use of the binaries, this approach also speeds up loading as much as 7x for a large dynamically-linked MPI application in our evaluation.

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