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AMUDP Documentation
Author: Dan Bonachea and Dan Hettena
Contact email:
Home page:

AMUDP is an implementation of the AM-2 specification over UDP/IP. 

AMUDP is a portable implementation of the AM-2 specification that runs on UDP,
a standard component of the TCP/IP protocol suite that is ubiquitous across
platforms and operating systems.  The intent is a fully-portable implementation
that will work on any POSIX-like system.  We don't expect to achieve latency
performance competitive with a native implementation of AM optimized for
special purpose hardware, instead we seek to provide a compatibility layer that
will allow AM-based systems to quickly get up and running on virtually any
platform. The motivation for choosing UDP over other protocols (such as TCP) is
that it typically provides the lowest overhead access to the network with
little or no internal buffering, and the connectionless model is best suited
for scaling up the number of distributed processors. Because UDP occasionally
drops packets, we add a thin reliability layer that provides the guaranteed
delivery required by AM-2, hopefully providing this fault tolerance with better
performance than full-blown TCP. 

Design documentation for the original AMUDP implementation is available from
the website above. The current version of AMUDP strictly targets the BSD/POSIX
sockets layer - it no longer supports UFXP or native MS Windows sockets,
although Windows support is available via the Cygwin POSIX environment for
Windows (

AMUDP includes an extension interface called AMUDP_SPMD that performs job
spawning and initialization services, using either ssh or a provided
site-specific job spawner. See the paper above and test code for details.

AMUDP is used to implement the GASNet communication system ( 
Further documentation about using AMUDP is available in the udp-conduit


* C99 and C++98 compilers. The C++ STL is not used in any way.

* A POSIX-like environment, including BSD/POSIX sockets and file descriptors

* GNU Make and basic UNIX tools for the provided Makefiles


AMUDP has a few notable departures from the AM-2 specification:

* The client must call AM_SetExpectedResources() exactly once on an endpoint
  after setting up the translation table and before making any calls to the
  transport functions (AM_Poll, AM_Reply* or AM_Request*). It is also an error to
  call AM_Map, AM_MapAny or AM_Unmap (which change the translation table) after
  the call to AM_SetExpectedResources().

* AM_PAR bundle/endpoint access is not implemented - this means AMUDP does
  not provide thread safety, but can be used in a thread-funnelled mode with
  locking at the client level.

* The nbytes argument to Medium and Long AM handlers has type `size_t`

* AM_GetXferM is not implemented.

* Clients should not take the address of AM_ entry point "functions", because
  many are implemented as macros.

Change Log
AMUDP 3.15 (06/2018)
- Medium and Long AM handlers change in signature on 64-bit platforms: 
  the nbytes argument now has type size_t instead of int
- Fix compatibility issues with PGI C++ 17+
- Significant rearrangement of internal files and utilities
- AM Handler dispatching code is now strictly spec-compliant
- AMX_ENV_PREFIX_STR is now the preferred define for setting a client ENV prefix
- Several pseudo-public programmatic knobs renamed into the AMX_ namespace
- Bug 2774: source_addr to Med/Long injection is now ignored for nbytes=0
- Fix an unreported cosmetic output bug in AMX_RETURN error reporting

AMUDP 3.14 (03/2017)
- Fix AM_{Get,Set}NumHandlers and AM_MoveEndpoint
- Fix bug 3379: workaround a PGI optimizer bug on Darwin
- Export AMUDP_enEqual
- make run-tests now outputs summary results at the end
- Fix some harmless warnings about unused variables
- Renamed portable_platform.h
- Remove Makefile.darwin (no longer necessary)
- Fix compilation errors in verbose debug mode
- Update contact email

AMUDP 3.13 (10/2016)
- Restructure network buffer management to provide scalable
  buffer memory utilization to thousands of nodes and beyond.
- Adjust the set of available environment tuning knobs for better control of
  transfer performance at scale.
- Adjust default transfer parameters for better performance on 1GbE
- Numerous misc changes to improve performance
- Restructure AMUDP headers to reduce namespace clutter
- Expose AMUDP_SetTranslationTag
- Fix possible syntax errors with AM expression arguments
- Fix a compatibility issue with Cray CNL
- Fix a use-after-free bug in argument processing
- Fix a data corruption issue on 64-bit OSX on PowerPC
- Use realloc when appropriate to manage internal state

AMUDP 3.12 (06/2016)
- Add BLCR support
- Improve stdout/stderr routing to be more robust and use fewer descriptors
- Remove UETH/UFXP support
- Remove GLUNIX and REXEC spawn support
- Remove support for HPUX, SuperUX, MTX, Catamount, and native Win32 (use cygwin instead)
- Remove some obsolete files
Fix three significant bugs:
- Out-of-order delivery of UDP messages (which can occur on networks
  with multiple paths) was going undetected and could lead to silent
  loss and/or erroneous redelivery of AMs in the presence of
  retransmissions (caused by packet loss or high network load).
- On Cygwin 2.5 (2016-04-11 and later), ioctl(FIONREAD) always returns
  failure, was rendering AMUDP entirely unusable on that platform.
- On FreeBSD, ioctl(FIONREAD) may truncate long datagrams to around
  600 bytes, was rendering AMUDP unusable on that platform.