Campus Event Calendar

Event Entry

What and Who

Building an Operating System for the Data Center

Simon Peter
University of Washington
SWS Colloquium

Simon is a postdoctoral research associate at the University of

Washington, where he leads research in operating systems and

networks. His postdoctoral advisors are Tom Anderson and Arvind

Krishnamurthy. Simon received a Ph.D. in Computer Science from ETH

Zurich in 2012 and an MSc in Computer Science from the

Carl-von-Ossietzky University Oldenburg, Germany in 2006.

Simon's research focus is on data center performance issues. For his

work on the Arrakis high I/O performance operating system, he received

the Jay Lepreau best paper award (2014) and the Madrona prize

(2014). Previously, Simon has worked on the Barrelfish multicore

operating system and conducted further award-winning systems research

at various locations, including MSR Silicon Valley, MSR Cambridge,

Intel Labs Germany, UC Riverside, and the NSF.

AG 1, AG 2, AG 3, AG 4, AG 5, SWS, RG1, MMCI  
AG Audience

Date, Time and Location

Wednesday, 1 April 2015
-- Not specified --
E1 5


Data centers run a range of important applications with ever increasing performance demands,
from cloud and server computing to Big Data and eScience.

However, the scaling of CPU frequency has stalled

in recent years, leading to hardware architectures that no longer

transparently scale software performance. Two trends stand out: 1)

Instead of frequency, hardware architectures increase the number of

CPU cores, leaving complex memory system performance and CPU

scheduling tradeoffs exposed to software. 2) Network and storage I/O

performance continues to improve, but without matching improvements in

CPU frequency. Software thus faces ever increasing I/O efficiency


In my research, I address how operating systems (OSes) can handle

these growing complexity and performance pressures to avoid becoming

the limiting factor to performance. I first explain how current OS

architecture is already inadequate to address these trends, limiting

application performance. I then present how the OS can be redesigned

to eliminate the performance limitations without compromising on

existing features or application compatibility. I finish with an

outlook on how these hardware trends affect software in the future and

present ideas to address them.


Roslyn Stricker
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Roslyn Stricker, 03/24/2015 13:29 -- Created document.