GDM: Device memory management for GPGPU computing

Kaibo Wang, Xiaoning Ding, Rubao Lee, Shinpei Kato, Xiaodong Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


GPGPUs are evolving from dedicated accelerators towards mainstream commodity computing resources. During the transition, the lack of system management of device memory space on GPGPUs has become a major hurdle. In existing GPGPU systems, device memory space is still managed explicitly by individual applications, which not only increases the burden of programmers but can also cause application crashes, hangs, or low performance. In this paper, we present the design and implementation of GDM, a fully functional GPGPU device memory manager to address the above problems and unleash the computing power of GPGPUs in general-purpose environments. To effectively coordinate the device memory usage of different applications, GDM takes control over device memory allocations and data transfers to and from device memory, leveraging a buffer allocated in each application's virtual memory. GDM utilizes the unique features of GPGPU systems and relies on several effective optimization techniques to guarantee the efficient usage of device memory space and to achieve high performance. We have evaluated GDM and compared it against stateof-the-art GPGPU system software on a range of workloads. The results show that GDM can prevent applications from crashes, including those induced by device memory leaks, and improve system performance by up to 43%.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)533-545
Number of pages13
JournalPerformance Evaluation Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 20 2014
EventACM SIGMETRICS International Conference on Measurement and Modeling of Computer Systems, SIGMETRICS 2014 - Austin, United States
Duration: Jun 16 2014Jun 20 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Networks and Communications


  • GPU
  • Memory management
  • Operating system


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