Mark Allman / ICSI @mallman_icsi

Wesley Eddy, Mark Allman. Advantages of Parallel Processing and the Effects of Communications Time. Technical Report CR-209455, NASA Glenn Research Center, February 2000.


Many computing tasks involve heavy mathematical calculations, or analyzing large amounts of data. These operations can take a long time to complete using only one computer. Networks such as the Internet provide many computers with the ability to communicate with each other. Parallel or distributed computing takes advantage of these networked computers by arranging them to work together on a problem, thereby reducing the time needed to obtain the solution. The drawback to using a network of computers to solve a problem is the time wasted in communicating between the various hosts. The application of distributed computing techniques to a space environment or to use over a satellite network would therefore be limited by the amount of time needed to send data across the network, which would typically take much longer than on a terrestrial network. This experiment shows how much faster a large job can be performed by adding more computers to the task, what role communications time plays in the total execution time, and the impact a long-delay network has on a distributed computing system.


    author      =        "Wesley Eddy and Mark Allman",
    title       =        "{Advantages of Parallel Processing and the Effects of Communications Time}",
    institution =        "NASA Glenn Research Center",
    year        =        2000,
    number      =        "CR-209455",
    month       =        feb,
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