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NUMAtic Project and the DUnX OS

Department of Computer Science
Duke University


Principal investigators Carla Ellis
Mark Holliday
Other contributors Rick LaRowe
David Kotz
Students Vick Khera
Steve Owen
Chris Connelly


Carla Ellis
Department of Computer Science
Duke University
Durham NC 27243

(919) 660-6523

Project Description

Non-uniformity of memory access is an almost inevitable feature of the memory architecture in any shared memory multiprocessor design that can scale to large numbers of processors. The NUMAtic project is a program of experimental research exploring memory management on NUMA machines. The scope of the project covers a full range of policies and mechanisms for controlling the location and movement of data including

1. The migration of code and data among the distinct memory modules that collectively comprise the main memory of a NUMA machine.

2. The replication (or caching) of copies of pages within main memory.

3. Interactions among issues of dynamic memory placement, processor allocation, and thread scheduling.

4. The organization and management of secondary memory based on parallel independent disks.

The DUnX (pronounced ducks") Operating System on BBN Butterfly GP-1000 multiprocessor has been developed to study issues 1-4. DUnX has been in daily use at Duke's Computer Science Department since November 1989. The RAPID Transit file system testbed has been designed to investigate item 5.

Report Availability

Copies of Duke Technical Reports are available from