Combining virtualization and containerization to support interactive games and simulations on the cloud

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Simulation Modelling Practice and Theory



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Cloud-computing, Containerization, High performance computing, Simulation-based training, Virtualization


© 2018 Elsevier B.V. Interactive training through the use of game-based and virtual software simulators pose challenges on traditional networks of computing assets. A variety of organizations and domains, including the entertainment industry, energy and financial sectors, military, and video gaming, have turned to high performance computing (HPC) as a powerful enough platform to run these interactive simulations. This work explores the feasibility of extending a traditional HPC environment into a cloud-based service that is capable of supporting multiple simultaneous interactive simulations, while continuing to solve compute-intensive tasks. The goal of this work is to extend the scope of software that can be applied to an HPC environment while preserving performance efficacy. To accomplish the proposed HPC goal, this work investigates four HPC load-balancing techniques through virtualization, software containers, and clustering to simultaneously and optimally analyze, schedule, and execute game-based simulation applications. Our experimentation compares these different techniques for performance and to determine the feasibility of extending HPC capability. The selection of which deployment technique to employ should depend on the availability of cluster resources, the number of competing software jobs, and the type of software to be scheduled.

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