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We present the scalable, elastic operator scheduler in IBM Streams 4.2. Streams is a distributed stream processing system used in production at many companies in a wide range of industries. The programming language for Streams, SPL, presents operators, tuples and streams as the primary abstractions. A fundamental SPL optimization is operator fusion, where multiple operators execute in the same process. Streams 4.2 introduces automatic submission-time fusion to simplify application development and deployment. However, potentially thousands of operators could then execute in the same process, with no user guidance for thread placement. We needed a way to automatically figure out how many threads to use, with arbitrarily sized applications on a wide variety of hardware, and without any input from programmers. Our solution has two components. The first is a scalable operator scheduler that minimizes synchronization, locks and global data, while allowing threads to execute any operator and dynamically come and go. The second is an elastic algorithm to dynamically adjust the number of threads to optimize performance, using the principles of trusted measurements to establish trends. We demonstrate our scheduler’s ability to scale to over a hundred threads, and our elasticity algorithm’s ability to adapt to different work- loads on an Intel Xeon system with 176 logical cores, and an IBM Power8 system with 184 logical cores.

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