SC23 Proceedings

The International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage, and Analysis

Doctoral Showcase Archive

High Performance Serverless for HPC and Clouds

Author: Marcin Copik (ETH Zürich)

Advisor: Torsten Hoefler (ETH Zurich – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology)

Abstract: Function-as-a-Service (FaaS) computing brought a fundamental shift in resource management. It allowed for new and better solutions to the problem of low resource utilization, an issue that has been known in data centers for decades. The problem persists as the frequently changing resource availability cannot be addressed entirely with techniques such as persistent cloud allocations and batch jobs. The elastic fine-grained tasking and largely unconstrained scheduling of FaaS create new opportunities. Still, modern serverless platforms struggle to achieve the high performance needed for the most demanding and latency-critical workloads. Furthermore, many applications cannot be “FaaSified” without non-negligible loss in performance, and the short and stateless functions employed in FaaS must be easy to program, debug, and optimize. By solving the fundamental performance challenges of FaaS, we can build a fast and efficient programming model that brings innovative cloud techniques into HPC data centers, allowing users to benefit from pay-as-you-go billing and helping operators to decrease running costs and their environmental impact. My PhD research attempts to bridge the gap between high-performance programming and modern FaaS computing frameworks. I have been working on tailored solutions for different levels of the FaaS computing stack: from computing and network devices to high-level optimizations and efficient system designs.

Thesis Canvas: pdf

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