Trustworthy Systems

vNUMA: A virtual shared-memory multiprocessor


Matthew Chapman and Gernot Heiser



Open Kernel Labs


vNUMA, for virtual NUMA, is a virtual machine that presents a cluster as a virtual shared-memory multiprocessor. It is designed to make the computational power of clusters available to legacy applications and operating systems.

We present the design and Itanium-based implementation of vNUMA, and its trade-offs. We discuss in detail the enhancements to standard protocols that were made when implementing distributed shared memory inside a hypervisor instead of middleware. We examine the scalability of vNUMA on a small cluster, and analyse some of the design choices.

BibTeX Entry

    address          = {San Diego, USA},
    author           = {Chapman, Matthew and Heiser, Gernot},
    booktitle        = {USENIX Annual Technical Conference},
    editor           = {{Geoffrey M. Voelker and Alec Wolman}},
    keywords         = {operating systems, virtual machines, distributed systems},
    month            = jun,
    pages            = {349--362},
    paperurl         = {},
    title            = {{vNUMA}: A Virtual Shared-Memory Multiprocessor},
    year             = {2009}