10. BenchmarksΒΆ

Performance, and specifically improved application performance, is a main objective for the existence of RADICAL-Pilot. To enable users to understand performance of both RADICAL-Pilot itself and of the applications executed with RADICAL-Pilot, we provide some utilities for benchmarking and performance analysis.


Performance profiling is enabled by setting RADICAL_PILOT_PROFILE in the application environment. If profiling is enabled, the application can request any number of cores on the resource local.localhost.

During operation, RADICAL-Pilot stores time stamps of different events and activities in MongoDB, under the ID of the radical.pilot.Session. That information can be used for post mortem performance analysis. To do so, one needs to specify the session ID to be examined – you can print the session ID when running your application, via

print "session id: %s" % session.uid

With that session ID, you can use the tool radicalpilot-stats to print some statistics, and to plot some performance graphs:

$ radicalpilot-stats -m plot -s 53b5bbd174df926f4a4d3318

This command will, in the plot mode shown above, produce a 53b5bbd174df926f4a4d3318.png and a 53b5bbd174df926f4a4d3318.pdf plot (where 53b5bbd174df926f4a4d3318 is the session ID as mentioned. The same command has other modi for inspecting sessions – you can see a help message via

$ ./bin/radicalpilot-stats -m help

usage   : ./bin/radicalpilot-stats -m mode [-d dburl] [-s session]
example : ./bin/radicalpilot-stats -m stats -d mongodb://localhost/radicalpilot -s 536afe101d41c83696ea0135

modes :

   help  : show this message
   list  : show  a  list   of sessions in the database
   tree  : show  a  tree   of session objects
   dump  : show  a  tree   of session objects, with full details
   sort  : show  a  list   of session objects, sorted by type
   hist  : show timeline   of session history
   stat  : show statistics of session history (not implemented)
   plot  : save gnuplot representing session history

 The default command is 'list'.  If no session ID is specified, operations
 which apply to a single session will choose the last session in the given
 DB.  The default MongoDB is 'mongodb://ec2-184-72-89-141.compute-1.amazonaws.com:27017/radicalpilot/'

An exemplar performance plot is included below. It represents a number of events and metrics, represented over a time axis. In particular, it shows (at the bottom) the utilization of the various compute cores managed by the pilots in the session – if that utilization is showing no major gaps, your application should make efficient use of the allocated resources.


Note that the plotting capability needs an up-to-date installation of gnuplot with the cairo-png backend. For Linux, that can be installed from the usual package repositories. For MacOS, the following should take care of the installation:

# Install and configure brew: http://brew.sh/
# Install xquartz. Download the dmg package from http://xquartz.macosforge.org/landing/
# From a terminal issue the following commands:

$ brew install cairo
$ brew install -v gnuplot --pdf --cairo --latex --with-x --wx