Dec 12 – 13, 2016
University of Manchester, Sackville Street Building
Europe/London timezone

Writing Scalable Parallel Applications with MPI

Learning the basic MPI syntax and writing small example programs can be relatively straightforward, but many questions only arise when you first tackle a large-scale parallel application. Typical topics include how best to avoid deadlock, overlapping communication and calculation, understanding performance, debugging strategies or parallel IO.

This hands-on course is an opportunity to learn how best to use MPI based on the experiences of the ARCHER CSE team at EPCC.

Rather than covering advanced MPI functions, it will focus on the practicalities of using MPI effectively for large-scale parallel scientific applications. It will also cover the most common mistakes and misconceptions that occur in MPI programs.


Monday December 12th

09:30 Lecture: Introduction
09:45 Lecture: MPI Quiz (i)
10:30 Practical: log on and run a test job
11:00 COFFEE
11:30 Lecture: MPI history and internal design
12:15 Practical: ping-pong exercise
13:00 LUNCH
14:00 Lecture: scaling behaviour and synchronisation issues
15:00 Practical: traffic model thought experiment
15:30 TEA
16:00 MPI optimisation techniques
16:45 Practical: traffic model
17:30 CLOSE

Tuesday December 13th

09:30 Lecture: Performance modelling
09:45 Lecture: MPI Datatypes
10:15 Practical: MPI Datatypes
11:00 COFFEE
11:30 Lecture: Performance tools: Scalasca + Craypat
12:00 Practical: CFD model
13:00 LUNCH
14:00 Communicator management
14:45 MPI Quiz (ii)
15:30 TEA
16:00 Individual consultancy session
17:30 CLOSE 

Course materials

University of Manchester, Sackville Street Building
G41 (Monday) and D35 (Tuesday)
University of Manchester, Sackville Street Building, Sackville Street, Manchester, M1

This course is part-funded by the PRACE project and is free to all. Please register using the online form. If you have any questions, please consult the course forum page or contact

Information about how to find the Sackville Street Building can be found on the Interactive Map