Getting started with Kubernetes
Kubernetes (K8s) is a systems administration tool originally developed by Google to orchestrate the deployment, scaling, and management of containerised applications.
Nvidia have created drivers to officially support clusters of Nvidia GPUs managed by K8s.
Using K8s to manage the EIDFGPUS provides two key advantages:
- native support for containers enabling reproducible analysis whilst minimising demand on system admin.
- automated resource allocation for GPUs and storage volumes that are shared across multiple users.
Interacting with a K8s cluster
An overview of the key components of a K8s container can be seen on the Kubernetes docs website.
The primary component of a K8s cluster is a pod.
A pod is a set of one or more containers (and their storage volumes) that share resources.
Users define the resource requirements of a pod (i.e. number/type of GPU) and the containers to be ran in the pod by writing a yaml file.
The pod definition yaml file is sent to the cluster using the K8s API and is assigned to an appropriate node to be ran.
A node is a unit of the cluster, e.g. a group of GPUs or virtual GPUs.
Users interact with the K8s API using the
kubectl (short for kubernetes control) commands.
Some of the kubectl commands are restricted on the EIDF cluster in order to ensure project details are not shared across namespaces.
Useful commands are:
kubectl create -f <pod definition yaml>: Create a new pod with requested resources. Returns an error if a pod with the same name already exists.
kubectl apply -f <pod definition yaml>: Create a new pod with requested resources. If a pod with the same name already exists it updates that pod with the new resource/container requirements outlined in the yaml.
kubectl delete pod <pod name>: Delete a pod from the cluster.
kubectl get pods: Summarise all pods the users has active (or queued).
kubectl describe pods: Verbose description of all pods the users has active (or queued).
kubectl logs <pod name>: Retrieve the log files associated with a running pod.
Creating your first pod
Nvidia have several prebuilt docker images to perform different tasks on their GPU hardware.
The list of docker images is available on their website.
This example uses their CUDA sample code simulating nbody interactions.
- Open an editor of your choice and create the file test_NBody.yml
- Copy the following in to the file:
The pod resources are defined with the
Resources defined in the
requests tags are the minimum possible resources required for the pod to run.
If a pod is assigned to an unused node then it may use resources beyond those requested.
This may allow the task within the pod to run faster, but it also runs the risk of unnecessarily blocking off resources for future pod requests.
limits tag specifies the maximum resources that can be assigned to a pod.
The EIDFGPUS cluster requires all pods to have
limits tags for cpu and memory resources in order to be accepted.
Finally, it optional to define GPU resources but only the
limits tag is used to specify the use of a GPU,
limits: nvidia.com/gpu: 1.
apiVersion: v1 kind: Pod metadata: generateName: first-pod- spec: restartPolicy: OnFailure containers: - name: cudasample image: nvcr.io/nvidia/k8s/cuda-sample:nbody-cuda11.7.1 args: ["-benchmark", "-numbodies=512000", "-fp64", "-fullscreen"] resources: requests: cpu: 2 memory: "1Gi" limits: cpu: 4 memory: "4Gi" nvidia.com/gpu: 1
- Save the file and exit the editor
- Run `kubectl create -f test_NBody.yml'
This will output something like:
kubectl get pods
This will output something like:
pi-tt9kq 0/1 Completed 0 24h first-pod-24n7n 0/1 Completed 0 24h first-pod-2j5tc 0/1 Completed 0 24h first-pod-2kjbx 0/1 Completed 0 24h sample-2mnvg 0/1 Completed 0 24h sample-4sng2 0/1 Completed 0 24h sample-5h6sr 0/1 Completed 0 24h sample-6bqql 0/1 Completed 0 24h first-pod-7gdtb 0/1 Completed 0 39s sample-8dnht 0/1 Completed 0 24h sample-8pxz4 0/1 Completed 0 24h sample-bphjx 0/1 Completed 0 24h sample-cp97f 0/1 Completed 0 24h sample-gcbbb 0/1 Completed 0 24h sample-hdlrr 0/1 Completed 0 24h
View the logs of the pod you ran
kubectl logs first-pod-7gdtb
This will output something like:
Run "nbody -benchmark [-numbodies=<numBodies>]" to measure performance. -fullscreen (run n-body simulation in fullscreen mode) -fp64 (use double precision floating point values for simulation) -hostmem (stores simulation data in host memory) -benchmark (run benchmark to measure performance) -numbodies=<N> (number of bodies (>= 1) to run in simulation) -device=<d> (where d=0,1,2.... for the CUDA device to use) -numdevices=<i> (where i=(number of CUDA devices > 0) to use for simulation) -compare (compares simulation results running once on the default GPU and once on the CPU) -cpu (run n-body simulation on the CPU) -tipsy=<file.bin> (load a tipsy model file for simulation) NOTE: The CUDA Samples are not meant for performance measurements. Results may vary when GPU Boost is enabled. > Fullscreen mode > Simulation data stored in video memory > Double precision floating point simulation > 1 Devices used for simulation GPU Device 0: "Ampere" with compute capability 8.0 > Compute 8.0 CUDA device: [NVIDIA A100-SXM4-40GB] number of bodies = 512000 512000 bodies, total time for 10 iterations: 10570.778 ms = 247.989 billion interactions per second = 7439.679 double-precision GFLOP/s at 30 flops per interaction
delete your pod with
kubectl delete pod first-pod-7gdtb
Specifying GPU requirements
If you create multiple pods with the same yaml file and compare their log files you may notice the CUDA device may differ from
Compute 8.0 CUDA device: [NVIDIA A100-SXM4-40GB].
This is because K8s is allocating the pod to any free node irrespective of whether that node contains a full 80GB Nvida A100 or a GPU from a MIG Nvida A100.
The GPU resource request can be more specific by adding the type of product the pod is requesting to the node selector:
Example yaml file
apiVersion: v1 kind: Pod metadata: generateName: first-pod- spec: restartPolicy: OnFailure containers: - name: cudasample image: nvcr.io/nvidia/k8s/cuda-sample:nbody-cuda11.7.1 args: ["-benchmark", "-numbodies=512000", "-fp64", "-fullscreen"] resources: requests: cpu: 2 memory: "1Gi" limits: cpu: 4 memory: "4Gi" nvidia.com/gpu: 1 nodeSelector: nvidia.com/gpu.product: NVIDIA-A100-SXM4-40GB-MIG-1g.5gb
Running multiple pods with K8s jobs
A typical use case of the EIDFGPUS cluster will not consist of sending pod requests directly to Kubernetes.
Instead, users will use a job request which wraps around a pod specification and provide several useful attributes.
Firstly, if a pod is assigned to a node that dies then the pod itself will fail and the user has to manually restart it.
Wrapping a pod within a job enables the self-healing mechanism within K8s so that if a node dies with the job's pod on it then the job will find a new node to automatically restart the pod.
Furthermore, jobs allow users to define multiple pods that can run in parallel or series and will continue to spawn pods until a specific number of pods successfully terminate.
See below for an example K8s pod that requires three pods to successfully complete the example CUDA code before the job itself ends.
apiVersion: batch/v1 kind: Job metadata: generateName: jobtest- spec: completions: 3 parallelism: 1 template: metadata: name: job-test spec: containers: - name: cudasample image: nvcr.io/nvidia/k8s/cuda-sample:nbody-cuda11.7.1 args: ["-benchmark", "-numbodies=512000", "-fp64", "-fullscreen"] resources: requests: cpu: 2 memory: '1Gi' limits: cpu: 2 memory: '4Gi' nvidia.com/gpu: 1 restartPolicy: Never