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BluesMPI: Efficient MPI Non-blocking Alltoall Offloading Designs on Modern BlueField Smart NICs

Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNTCS,volume 12728)


In the state-of-the-art production quality MPI (Message Passing Interface) libraries, communication progress is either performed by the main thread or a separate communication progress thread. Taking advantage of separate communication threads can lead to a higher overlap of communication and computation as well as reduced total application execution time. However, such an approach can also lead to contention for CPU resources leading to sub-par application performance as the application itself has less number of available cores for computation. Recently, Mellanox has introduced the BlueField series of adapters which combine the advanced capabilities of traditional ASIC based network adapters with an array of ARM processors. In this paper, we propose BluesMPI, a high performance MPI non-blocking Alltoall design that can be used to offload MPI_Ialltoall collective operations from the host CPU to the Smart NIC. BluesMPI guarantees the full overlap of communication and computation for Alltoall collective operations while providing on-par pure communication latency to CPU based on-loading designs. We explore several designs to achieve the best pure communication latency for MPI_Ialltoall. Our experiments show that BluesMPI can improve the total execution time of the OSU Micro Benchmark for MPI_Ialltoall and P3DFFT application up to 44% and 30%, respectively. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first design that efficiently takes advantage of modern BlueField Smart NICs in deriving the MPI Alltoall collective operation to get peak overlap of communication and computation.


  • BlueField
  • SmartNIC
  • MPI
  • Alltoall
  • Offload

This research is supported in part by National Science Foundation grants #1818253, #1854828, #1931537, #2007991, #2018627, and XRAC grant #NCR-130002.

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Correspondence to Mohammadreza Bayatpour .

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Bayatpour, M., Sarkauskas, N., Subramoni, H., Maqbool Hashmi, J., Panda, D.K. (2021). BluesMPI: Efficient MPI Non-blocking Alltoall Offloading Designs on Modern BlueField Smart NICs. In: Chamberlain, B.L., Varbanescu, AL., Ltaief, H., Luszczek, P. (eds) High Performance Computing. ISC High Performance 2021. Lecture Notes in Computer Science(), vol 12728. Springer, Cham.

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