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  1. It is typical in High Performance Computing (HPC) courses to give students access to HPC platforms so that they can benefit from hands-on learning opportunities. Using such platforms, however, comes with logistical and pedagogical challenges. For instance, a logistical challenge is that access to representative platforms must be granted to students, which can be difficult for some institutions or course modalities; and a pedagogical challenge is that hands-on learning opportunities are constrained by the configurations of these platforms. A way to address these challenges is to instead simulate program executions on arbitrary HPC platform configurations. In this work we focusmore »on simulation in the specific context of distributed-memory computing and MPI programming education. While using simulation in this context has been explored in previous works, our approach offers two crucial advantages. First, students write standard MPI programs and can both debug and analyze the performance of their programs in simulation mode. Second, large-scale executions can be simulated in short amounts of time on a single standard laptop computer. This is possible thanks to SMPI, an MPI simulator provided as part of SimGrid. After detailing the challenges involved when using HPC platforms for HPC education and providing background information about SMPI, we present SMPI Courseware. SMPI Courseware is a set of in-simulation assignments that can be incorporated into HPC courses to provide students with hands-on experience for distributed-memory computing and MPI programming learning objectives. We describe some these assignments, highlighting how simulation with SMPI enhances the student learning experience.« less
  2. Scientific workflows are used routinely in numerous scientific domains, and Workflow Management Systems (WMSs) have been developed to orchestrate and optimize workflow executions on distributed platforms. WMSs are complex software systems that interact with complex software infrastructures. Most WMS research and development activities rely on empirical experiments conducted with full-fledged software stacks on actual hardware platforms. Such experiments, however, are limited to hardware and software infrastructures at hand and can be labor- and/or time-intensive. As a result, relying solely on real-world experiments impedes WMS research and development. An alternative is to conduct experiments in simulation. In this work we presentmore »WRENCH, a WMS simulation framework, whose objectives are (i)~accurate and scalable simulations; and (ii)~easy simulation software development. WRENCH achieves its first objective by building on the SimGrid framework. While SimGrid is recognized for the accuracy and scalability of its simulation models, it only provides low-level simulation abstractions and thus large software development efforts are required when implementing simulators of complex systems. WRENCH thus achieves its second objective by providing high-level and directly re-usable simulation abstractions on top of SimGrid. After describing and giving rationales for WRENCH's software architecture and APIs, we present a case study in which we apply WRENCH to simulate the Pegasus production WMS. We report on ease of implementation, simulation accuracy, and simulation scalability so as to determine to which extent WRENCH achieves its two above objectives. We also draw both qualitative and quantitative comparisons with a previously proposed workflow simulator.« less