Heterogeneous Distributed Shared Memory

Songnian Zhou, Michael Stumm, David Wortman, Kai Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Heterogeneity in distributed systems is increasingly a fact of life, due to specialization of computing equipment. It is highly desirable to integrate heterogeneous hosts into a coherent computing environment to support distributed and parallel applications, so that the individual strengths of the different hosts can be exploited together. Distributed shared memory (DSM), a high-level, highly transparent model for interprocess communication in distributed systems, is a promising vehicle for achieving such an integration. This paper studies the design, implementation, and performance of heterogeneous distributed shared memory (HDSM). As a practical research effort, we have developed a prototype HDSM system that integrates very different types of hosts, and have ported a number of applications to this system. Our experience shows that, despite a number of difficulties in data conversion, HDSM is indeed implementable with minimal loss in functional and performance transparency when compared to homogeneous DSM systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)540-554
Number of pages15
JournalIEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1992
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Signal Processing
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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