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Simon Fraser University partners with NVIDIA for online 'HPC OpenACC Bootcamp' - Dec 2-3

SFU and NVIDIA logos

Simon Fraser University is partnering with NVIDIA to offer a number of bootcamps and a hackaton events utilizing Cedar's supercomputing power. Cedar is one of five national systems Compute Canada deployed as part of one of the biggest advanced research computing renewals in Canada’s history.

In this Bootcamp, you'll learn:

  • how to write a portable parallel program that can run on multicore CPUs and accelerators like GPUs
  • how to apply incremental parallelization strategies using the OpenACC programming model
  • how to accelerate an example application that simulates heat distribution across a 2-dimensional metal plate (and apply your knowledge to accelerate a mini-application)

Event Format

The bootcamp will be hosted online in the pacific time zone. All communication will be done through Zoom, Slack and email.


Basic experience with C/C++ or Fortran. No GPU programming knowledge is required.


Click here to register.
Deadline to apply: November 24, 2020


Day 1: December 2, 2020

  • Welcome: 9:00 AM PDT
  • Connecting to a cluster: 9:00 AM - 09:15 AM PDT
  • Introduction to GPU programming: 9:15 AM - 9:30 AM PDT (Lecture)
    • What is a GPU and Why Should You care?
    • What is GPU Programming?
    • Available Libraries, Programming Models, Platforms.
  • Introduction to OpenACC: 9:15 AM - 10:00 AM PDT (Lecture + Lab)
    • What is OpenACC and Why Should You Care?
    • Profile-driven Development.
    • First Steps with OpenACC.
    • Lab 1.
  • OpenACC Data Management: 10:00 AM - 10:45 AM PDT (Lecture + Lab)
    • CPU and GPU Memories.
    • CUDA Unified (Managed) Memory.
    • OpenACC Data Management.
    • Lab 2.
  • Break 11:00 AM - 11:30 AM PDT
  • Gangs, Workers, and Vectors Demystified: 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM (Lecture + Lab)
    • GPU Profiling.
    • Loop Optimizations.
    • Lab 3.
  • Lunch Break 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM PDT
  • Mini-application challenge: 1:30 PM - 6:00PM PDT
    • Overview of the mini-application
    • Review steps to acceleration
    • Application challenge (OFFLINE with support through slack)

Day 2: December 3, 2020

  • Welcome: 9:00 AM PDT
  • Mini-application Solution Walk-through: 9:00 AM - 9:15 AM PDT
  • Introduction to NVIDIA ® Nsight ™ Tools: 9:15 AM - 9:45 AM PDT
    • Overview of Nsight Tools
    • How to profile a serial application with NVIDIA Tools Extension (NVTX)
    • Overview of optimization cycle with Nsight Systems
  • Profiling mini-application: 9:45 AM -11:00 AM PDT
    • Profile a sequential weather modeling application (integrated with NVTX APIs) with NVIDIA Nsight Systems to capture and trace CPU events and time ranges
    • Understand how to use NVIDIA Nsight Systems profiler’s report to detect hotspots and apply OpenACC compute constructs to the serial application to parallelise it on the GPU
    • Learn how to use Nsight Systems to identify issues such as underutilized GPU device and unnecessary data movements in the application and to apply optimization strategies steps by steps to expose more parallelism and utilize computer’s CPU and GPU
  • Wrap-up: 11:00 AM - 11:30 AM PDT

Compute Resources

Participants will have access to Simon Fraser University's Supercomputer Cedar which is one of the most powerful academic supercomputers in Canada. Cedar provides the scale and capacity that is paving the way for new research breakthroughs. Cedar provides the computing power Canadian researchers need to achieve transformational innovations that directly benefit Canadians. Just some of these include personalized medicine for better patient care, green technologies to help fight climate change, and artificial intelligence research that will contribute to the Canadian economy.

More Information

Click here to visit the event website.