Performance implications of synchronization support for parallel fortran programs

Sadun Anik, Wen Mei W. Hwu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper studies the performance implications of architectural synchronization support for automatically parallelized numerical programs. As the basis for this work, we analyze the needs for synchronization in automatically parallelized numerical programs. The needs are due to task scheduling, iteration scheduling, barriers, and data dependence handling. We present synchronization algorithms for efficient execution of programs with nested parallel loops. Next, we identify how various hardware synchronization support can be used to satisfy these software synchronization needs. The synchronization primitives studied are test and set, fetch and add, and exchange-byte operations. In addition to these, synchronization bus implementation of lock/unlock and fetch and add operations are also considered. Finally, we ran experiments to quantify the impact of various architectural support on the performance of a bus-based shared memory multiprocessor running automatically parallelized numerical programs. We found that supporting an atomic fetch and add primitive in shared memory is as effective as supporting lock/unlock operations with a synchronization bus. Both achieve substantial performance improvement over the cases where atomic test and set and exchange-byte operations are supported in shared memory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)202-215
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Parallel and Distributed Computing
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Artificial Intelligence


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