Automated Tracing of I/O Stack

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Executive Summary

Efficient execution of parallel scientific applications requires high-performance storage systems designed to meet their I/O requirements. Most high-performance I/O intensive applications access multiple layers of the storage stack during their disk operations. A typical I/O request from these applications may include accesses to high-level libraries such as MPI I/O, executing on clustered parallel file systems like PVFS2, which are in turn supported by native file systems like Linux. In order to design and implement parallel applications that exercise this I/O stack, it is important to understand the flow of I/O calls through the entire storage system. Such understanding helps in identifying the potential performance and power bottlenecks in different layers of the storage hierarchy.

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