The Message Passing Interface (MPI) specification is widely used for solving significant scientific and engineering problems on parallel computers. There exist more than a dozen implementations on computer platforms ranging from IBM SP-2 supercomputers to clusters of PCs running Windows NT or Linux ("Beowulf" machines). The initial MPI Standard document, MPI-1, was recently updated by the MPI Forum. The new version, MPI-2, contains both significant enhancements to the existing MPI core and new features.
Since its release in summer 1994, the Message Passing Interface (MPI) specification has become a standard for message-passing libraries for parallel computations. There exist more than a dozen implementations on a variety of computing platforms, from the IBM SP-2 supercomputer to PCs running Windows NT. The MPI Forum, which has continued to work on MPI, has recently released MPI-2, a new definition that includes significant extensions, improvements, and clarifications. This volume presents a complete specification of the MPI-2 Standard.
Use of Beowulf clusters (collections of off-the-shelf commodity computers programmed to act in concert, resulting in supercomputer performance at a fraction of the cost) has spread far and wide in the computational science community. Many application groups are assembling and operating their own "private supercomputers" rather than relying on centralized computing centers. Such clusters are used in climate modeling, computational biology, astrophysics, and materials science, as well as non-traditional areas such as financial modeling and entertainment.