SnuCL – OpenCL heterogeneous cluster computing

June 27th, 2012

SnuCL is an OpenCL framework and freely available, open-source software developed at Seoul National University. It naturally extends the original OpenCL semantics to the heterogeneous cluster environment. The target cluster consists of a single host node and multiple compute nodes. They are connected by an interconnection network, such as Gigabit and InfiniBand switches. The host node contains multiple CPU cores and each compute node consists of multiple CPU cores and multiple GPUs. For such clusters, SnuCL provides an illusion of a single heterogeneous system for the programmer. A GPU or a set of CPU cores becomes an OpenCL compute device. SnuCL allows the application to utilize compute devices in a compute node as if they were in the host node. Thus, with SnuCL, OpenCL applications written for a single heterogeneous system with multiple OpenCL compute devices can run on the cluster without any modifications. SnuCL achieves both high performance and ease of programming in a heterogeneous cluster environment.

SnuCL consists of SnuCL runtime and compiler. The SnuCL compiler is based on the OpenCL C compiler in SNU-SAMSUNG OpenCL framework. Currently, the SnuCL compiler supports x86, ARM, and PowerPC CPUs, AMD GPUs, and NVIDIA GPUs.