NVIDIA GPUDirect Storage Release Notes

Release information for NVIDIA® Magnum IO GPUDirect® Storage.

1. Introduction

Release information for NVIDIA® GPUDirect® Storage (GDS) for developers and users.

NVIDIA® Magnum IO GPUDirect® Storage (GDS) is one of the members of the GPUDirect family of technologies. GDS enables a direct data path for direct memory access (DMA) transfers between GPU memory and storage. This direct path increases IO bandwidth, decreases IO latency and reduces the utilization load on the host CPU.

GDS is available on third party storage solutions from DDN EXAScaler®, IBM Spectrum Scale, VAST NFS, WekaFS™, NVmesh Excelero, ScaleFlux, Micron, and PavillionData. GDS documents and online resources provide additional context for the optimal use of and understanding of GPUDirect Storage.

To learn more about GDS, refer to the following posts:

2. New Features

The following features have been added in v1.0
  • New configuration and environment variables for the cuFile library.
  • Fixed error handling behavior for Weka retriable and unsupported errors.
  • Removed hard dependency on librcu-bp.
  • Added read support for IBM Spectrum Scale.

3. MLNX_OFED and Filesystem Requirements

The following are the MLNX_OFED and filesystem requirements for GDS:

  • MLNX_OFED 5.3 and later, which supports NVMe NVMeoF, NFSoRDMA (VAST) on Linux kernel 4.15.x and 5.4.x. MLNX_OFED 5.4 is preferred.

    MLNX_OFED must be installed before installing GDS. Refer to Installing GPUDirect Storage for more information about installing MLNX_OFED.

  • The following distributed filesystems are supported:
    • DDN EXAScaler 5.2
    • IBM Spectrum Scale
    • VAST 3.4
    • WekaFS 3.8.0
  • Block/other file systems supported:
    • ExceleroNVMesh 2.2
    • PavillionData 2.0 or later
    • ScaleFlux CSD 3.2.7.0

4. Support Matrix

GDS has been tested on following NVIDIA GPUs:T10x, T4, A10, Quadro P6000, A100, and V100.

  GDS mode supported (includes fallback compat mode) Only compatibility mode supported
x86-64

RHEL 8.3, 8.4.

Ubuntu 18.04,20.04

Debian 10,

OpenSUSE 15.2,

RHEL 7.9,

CentOS 8.3,

SLES 15.2

5. Included Packages

The GDS package contains the following Debian packages:

  • gds-tools-11-4_*.deb

  • libcufile-11-4_*.deb

  • libcufile-dev-11-4_*.deb

  • nvidia-fs_2.7*.deb

  • nvidia-fs-dkms_2.7*.deb

  • nvidia-gds-11-4_*.deb

  • nvidia-gds_11.4.*.deb

Note: Each component has a README file. For example, for gds-tools, the README file is in the /usr/local/CUDA-11.4/gds/tools/ directory.

6. Minor Updates and Bug Fixes

The following minor updates and bug fixes were made in version 1.0:

  • nfs-rdma module in MLNX_OFED 5.3-1.0.0.1 does not compile. This has been fixed in MLNX_OFED 5.3-1.0.5.0.

  • nvidia-fs.ko kernel panic seen with NVIDIA driver 465.x with CUDA 11.3 has been fixed with CUDA 11.4 and NVIDIA driver 470.x.

7. Known Issues

This section provides information about the known issues in this release of GDS.

  • If the volume/file system where cufile.log is residing runs out of space, then a GPU application using GDS is likely to fail and exit. This issue will be fixed in an upcoming release.
  • When using DDN Lustre for files less than 4k, you may see a data corruption issue in GDS mode.
  • For DDN EXAScaler filesystem:

    • With stripe count > 1, cuFileRead and cuFileWrite do not work with poll mode enabled for versions older than 2.12.5_ddn10.
    • With 2.12.5_ddn10, any reads beyond EOF causes a BUG_ON inside nvidia-fs.
  • RHEL8.3 does not have default udev rules for detecting RAID members, which disables GDS on RAID volumes. Refer to the section Adding udev Rules for RAID Volumes in the GPUDirect Storage Installation and Troubleshooting Guide.

  • On DGX OS:

8. Known Limitations

This section provides information about the known limitations in this release of GDS.

  • The RTX series of GPUs supports only compatibility mode.
  • With any NVIDIA software components installed, downgrading from RHEL 8.4 to RHEL 8.3 is not supported.
  • For DDN EXAScaler, checksum is disabled in the read/write IO path.
  • For WekaFS, checksum is disabled in the read/write IO path.
  • cuFile APIs are not supported with applications using the fork() system call.
  • GDS Compatibility mode works on GDS qualified file systems: EXAScaler, ext4, IBM Spectrum Scale, VAST, and WekaFS.
  • GDS with IOMMU enabled or ACS enabled are not guaranteed to work functionally or in a performant way with all non-DGX based platforms.
  • Refer to the following documentation for IBM Spectrum Scale Limitations with GDS: http://www.ibm.com/support/pages/node/6444075

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