Training several neural networks on a single workstation may require a large amount of training time, if performed on a single workstation. Dividing the training task among several workstations on a LAN (local area network) may significantly decrease the overall training time. This version of SNNS for workstation clusters allows to train several (possibly different) networks on different workstations and to control them with a single graphical user-interface.
The kernel interface has been extended for this purpose by an rpc module that is controlled by the graphical user-interface xgui. The module was named rpc because the communication among the workstations is performed via the rpc (remote procedure call) protocol.
This parallel SNNS version supports the following methods of parallelism:
The extension consists of two programs:
The files are located in the directory
where <architecture> is one of the currently supported machine architectures. We have tested it on an Intel Paragon and single CPU Sun SparcStations, and Linux systems. To use the program efficiently on multi-CPU systems like the DEC Alpha some adjustments in the libraries might be necessary.
The easiest way to start a new simulator kernel is from the new panel called by pressing the button in the SNNS rpc panel (see ).
If the networks are to be trained without human supervision, a similar functionality may also be obtained by starting a copy of the batch SNNS simulator snnsbat on each workstation.