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[farmshare-discuss] Barley sharing algorithm?

Michael Maxwell Murray mmurray1 at
Tue Aug 14 16:41:24 PDT 2012


As I made my comments in public, I will apologize in public. I wanted to 
- cite specific details so that the admins could verify that the problems existed, and
- initiate a discussion in the user community

I should have used separate emails, one to the admins and one to the public list.  I can 
see why you object to my email and I apologize. It was not my intent to suggest 
that your usage was inconsiderate of others. Users should be free to submit the
jobs they need done. When those demands exceed the cluster's capacity,
the queuing system, not the users, should be responsible for ensuring fairness. 
I wanted to point out that that capability was needed.

Mike Murray

----- Original Message -----
From: "Ricardo Pinho" <rpinho at>
To: "Open discussion for users of FarmShare" <farmshare-discuss at>
Sent: Tuesday, August 14, 2012 4:03:34 PM
Subject: Re: [farmshare-discuss] Barley sharing algorithm?

A fair share scheduling policy might not be the only thing missing. I appreciate the need to improve the sharing algorithm and people's urgency in running jobs. But I would also appreciate if users were not put on the spot on this public mailing list . It's extremely rude and unnecessary. The user could have had his point made with exactly the same urgency and agency, as it is his right, without mentioning my name, or even other user names in past postings. Admins may consider moderating. They may also consider accounting/qacct to evaluate user's usage. Thank you for all your work and running the cluster for us. 

On Aug 10, 2012, at 10:09 PM, Ruth Marinshaw wrote: 

Good evening. As Alex noted in an earlier message, we will indeed implement a fair share scheduling policy for Barley. I (the management referenced in someone's note) cannot provide a specific date at this point, as we have other commitments, in progress, to complete. But I anticipate that this change can be made in the next week or so. We are all in agreement that it needs to be done and it is the right thing to do, given that this is a shared, limited resource. Other queue parameter changes (max jobs, etc.) may also be considered. 

We are confirming whether there are additional system/application changes that need to be made in conjunction with the scheduling policy change and will provide timing details to this list as we have them. If the timeline is delayed for some reason, we will look at other interventions to try to address the situation that you all are facing and make job starts/executions more equitable. 

I appreciate your suggestions, feedback and ideas, as we develop strategies to tailor these relatively new, albeit limited, services to better meet the community's computational research needs. Please contact me directly ( ruthm at ) if you have additional ideas or needs that you would like to discuss. 

Best regards, 

Ruth Marinshaw 
Research Computing 

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Michael Maxwell Murray" < mmurray1 at > 
To: "Open discussion for users of FarmShare" < farmshare-discuss at > 
Sent: Friday, August 10, 2012 10:31:08 AM 
Subject: Re: [farmshare-discuss] Barley sharing algorithm? 

Hello Alex, 

Another data point on why fairshare is needed. I know you have lots to 
do, so I can accept that fairshare won't be implemented for a couple 
more weeks. However, I wanted to provide a succinct example of why 
fairshare is needed, so that the implementation is not delayed. 
After reading this, can you get some assurance from your management 
as to a firm date when fairshare can be implemented? 

Right now, user rpinho has 348 jobs running. 

corn05: qstat -u '*' | grep ' r ' | grep rpinho | wc 
348 3132 38628 

Other users are running 20 jobs: 

corn05: qstat -u '*' | grep ' r ' | grep -v rpinho | wc 
20 182 2212 

I have jobs that I would like to run that have been queued for a day: 
>From qstat: 

326846 0.75164 XX mmurray1 qw 08/09/2012 10:20:14 1 1-196:1 

Also, user tflanzer has 66 jobs that have been queued for 18 hours. Yet the most recent 
jobs to start belong to rpinho: 

326816 0.75165 m3r05p2118 rpinho r 08/10/2012 08:45:04 precise.q at barley17.stanford.ed 1 
326817 0.75165 m3r05p2119 rpinho r 08/10/2012 09:21:34 precise.q at barley01.stanford.ed 1 
326818 0.75165 m3r05p2120 rpinho r 08/10/2012 09:30:04 precise.q at barley06.stanford.ed 1 
326819 0.75165 m3r05p2121 rpinho r 08/10/2012 09:49:34 precise.q at barley11.stanford.ed 1 

Note that only 5 jobs have started in the last hour and a half, i.e. the queue is clearing slowly. 
Furthermore, rpihno has 25 more jobs in the queue that look like they will start ahead of 
other users. (To be fair, at 4:00 p.m. this afternoon, rpinhos older jobs will start 
to hit the 2 day limit, and the queue will start to clear faster.) 

It seems to me that when a slot becomes available, SGE should be starting jobs belonging to 
other users besides rpinho. Also, I have no problem with rpinho wanting to run a lot of jobs. 
It's just that I would like to see the computing power allocated more evenly. 

Thank you, 
Mike Murray 
Ph.D. Candidate 
Civil and Environmental Engineering 

corn05:/mnt/glusterfs/mmurray1/PhD/evpp/port> qstat -u '*' | grep ' r ' | grep -v rpinho | wc 
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Alex Chekholko" < chekh at > 
To: farmshare-discuss at 
Sent: Monday, August 6, 2012 10:38:08 AM 
Subject: Re: [farmshare-discuss] Barley sharing algorithm? 

Hi all, 

Thank you for your suggestions. We will implement basic fairshare in a 
couple of weeks and send an announcement. 


On 8/3/12 9:36 AM, Tomas Babak wrote: 

I agree, it would be great to implement fairshare that prioritizes jobs 

starting based on the USER CPU usage rather than just when the job was 

submitted - especially given the heavy usage of barley. This does not seem 

to be happening yet but I think was a planned implementation? 


-----Original Message----- 

From: farmshare-discuss-bounces at 

[mailto:farmshare-discuss-bounces at] On Behalf Of Michael 

Maxwell Murray 

Sent: Friday, August 03, 2012 9:23 AM 

To: Open discussion for users of FarmShare 

Subject: [farmshare-discuss] Barley sharing algorithm? 


Can someone explain the algorithm the Barley's used to allocate 

slots to users? Currently, there are 444 jobs running. 413 

jobs belong to the user ocarja, including the most recently 

launched jobs. Several other users have jobs that have been 

queued for more than a day (e.g. blhuynh, rpinho, tflanzer) 

Given that ocarja's jobs are consuming a large fraction for 

the CPUs and that there are other users waiting for a significant 

time, when a slot becomes available, why isn't a different user's 

job started? 

Thank you, 

Mike Murray 

Ph.D. Candidate 

Civil and Environmental Engineering 


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