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Performance analysis of single board computer clusters

Performance analysis of single board computer clusters
Performance analysis of single board computer clusters
The past few years have seen significant developments in Single Board Computer (SBC) hardware capabilities. These advances in SBCs translate directly into improvements in SBC clusters. In 2018 an individual SBC has more than four times the performance of a 64-node SBC cluster from 2013. This increase in performance has been accompanied by increases in energy efficiency (GFLOPS/W) and value for money (GFLOPS/$). We present systematic analysis of these metrics for three different SBC clusters composed of Raspberry Pi 3 Model B, Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ and Odroid C2 nodes respectively. A 16-node SBC cluster can achieve up to 60 GFLOPS, running at 80W. We believe that these improvements open new computational opportunities, whether this derives from a decrease in the physical volume required to provide a fixed amount of computation power for a portable cluster; or the amount of compute power that can be installed given a fixed budget in expendable compute scenarios. We also present a new SBC cluster construction form factor named Pi Stack; this has been designed to support edge compute applications rather than the educational use-cases favoured by previous methods. The improvements in SBC cluster performance and construction techniques mean that these SBC clusters are realising their potential as valuable developmental edge compute devices rather than just educational curiosities.
0167-739X
Basford, Philip J
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Johnston, Steven
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Perkins, Colin
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Garnock Jones, Tony
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Tso, Fung Po
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Pezaros, Dimitrios
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Mullins, Robert
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Yoneki, Eiko
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Singer, Jeremy
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Cox, Simon
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Basford, Philip J
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Johnston, Steven
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Perkins, Colin
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Garnock Jones, Tony
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Tso, Fung Po
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Pezaros, Dimitrios
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Mullins, Robert
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Yoneki, Eiko
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Singer, Jeremy
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Cox, Simon
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Basford, Philip J, Johnston, Steven, Perkins, Colin, Garnock Jones, Tony, Tso, Fung Po, Pezaros, Dimitrios, Mullins, Robert, Yoneki, Eiko, Singer, Jeremy and Cox, Simon (2019) Performance analysis of single board computer clusters. Future Generation Computer Systems. (doi:10.1016/j.future.2019.07.040).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The past few years have seen significant developments in Single Board Computer (SBC) hardware capabilities. These advances in SBCs translate directly into improvements in SBC clusters. In 2018 an individual SBC has more than four times the performance of a 64-node SBC cluster from 2013. This increase in performance has been accompanied by increases in energy efficiency (GFLOPS/W) and value for money (GFLOPS/$). We present systematic analysis of these metrics for three different SBC clusters composed of Raspberry Pi 3 Model B, Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ and Odroid C2 nodes respectively. A 16-node SBC cluster can achieve up to 60 GFLOPS, running at 80W. We believe that these improvements open new computational opportunities, whether this derives from a decrease in the physical volume required to provide a fixed amount of computation power for a portable cluster; or the amount of compute power that can be installed given a fixed budget in expendable compute scenarios. We also present a new SBC cluster construction form factor named Pi Stack; this has been designed to support edge compute applications rather than the educational use-cases favoured by previous methods. The improvements in SBC cluster performance and construction techniques mean that these SBC clusters are realising their potential as valuable developmental edge compute devices rather than just educational curiosities.

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Accepted/In Press date: 16 July 2019
Published date: 23 July 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 432646
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/432646
ISSN: 0167-739X
PURE UUID: d797e198-acb4-4bf1-ba98-39479bcb358b
ORCID for Philip J Basford: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-6058-8270
ORCID for Steven Johnston: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-3864-7072

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Date deposited: 23 Jul 2019 16:30
Last modified: 24 Jul 2019 00:35

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Contributors

Author: Steven Johnston ORCID iD
Author: Colin Perkins
Author: Tony Garnock Jones
Author: Fung Po Tso
Author: Dimitrios Pezaros
Author: Robert Mullins
Author: Eiko Yoneki
Author: Jeremy Singer
Author: Simon Cox

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