The Grid application toolkit: Toward generic and easy application programming interfaces for the Grid

Gabrielle Allen, Kelly Davis, Tom Goodale, Andrei Hutanu, Hartmut Kaiser, Thilo Kielmann, André Merzky, Rob Van Nieuwpoort, Alexander Reinefeld, Florian Schintke, Thorsten Schütt, E. D. Seidel, And Brygg Ullmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Core Grid technologies are rapidly maturing, but there remains a shortage of real Grid applications. One important reason is the lack of a simple and high-level application programming toolkit, bridging the gap between existing Grid middleware and application-level needs. The Grid Application Toolkit (GAT), as currently developed by the EC-funded project GridLab [1], provides this missing functionality. As seen from the application, the GAT provides a unified simple programming interface to the Grid infrastructure, tailored to the needs of Grid application programmers and users. A uniform programming interface will be needed for application developers to create a new generation of "Grid-aware" applications. The GAT implementation handles both the complexity and the variety of existing Grid middleware services via so-called adaptors. Complementing existing Grid middleware, GridLab also provides high-level services to implement the GAT functionality. We present the GridLab software architecture, consisting of the GAT, environment-specific adaptors, and GridLab services. We elaborate the concepts underlying the GAT and outline the corresponding application programming interface. We present the functionality of GridLab's high-level services and demonstrate how a dynamic Grid application can easily benefit from the GAT. All GridLab software is open source and can be downloaded from the project Web site.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)534-549
Number of pages16
JournalProceedings of the IEEE
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Generic services
  • Grid applications
  • Grid computing
  • Grid programming

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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