Portable Run-Time Support for Dynamic Object-Oriented Parallel Processing

Andrew S. Grimshaw, Jon B. Weissman, W. Timothy Strayer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Mentat is an object-oriented parallel processing system designed to simplify the task of writing portable parallel programs for parallel machines and workstation networks. The Mentat compiler and run-time system work together to automatically manage the communication and synchronization between objects. The run-time system marshalls member function arguments, schedules objects on processors, and dynamically constructs and executes large-grain data dependence graphs. In this article we present the Mentat run-time system. We focus on three aspects - the software architecture, including the interface to the compiler and the structure and interaction of the principle components of the run-time system; the run-time overhead on a component-by-component basis for two platforms, a Sun SparcStation 2 and an Intel Paragon; and an analysis of the minimum granularity required for application programs to overcome the run-time overhead.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)139-170
Number of pages32
JournalACM Transactions on Computer Systems
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 1996


  • D.1.3 [Programming Techniques]: Concurrent Programming - parallel programming
  • D.1.5 [Programming Techniques]: Object-Oriented Programming
  • D.3.2 [Programming Languages]: Language Classifications - concurrent, distributed, and parallel languages


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