Wireless Grids: Recent Advances in Resource and Job Management

Wireless Grids: Recent Advances in Resource and Job Management

Mariela J. Curiel H. (Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Colombia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-8732-5.ch012
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Abstract

Wireless grids extend the capability of Grid Computing by including a collection of wireless devices of diverse characteristics, such as sensors, mobile phones, laptops and special instruments. These new resources increase the power and accessibility of grids. Wireless devices can be grid resource consumers or grid resource providers. This chapter focuses in the use of mobile devices as resource providers. Some characteristics of these resources, such as limited CPU power, small screen, short battery life, and intermittent disconnection, are genuine challenges for the development of job management strategies. Our goal is to depict recent proposals in resource discovering, monitoring and job scheduling. The main contributions of the last five years will be described along the chapter. The highlights of the review includes: the use of agent technology; solutions oriented to applications composed of independent tasks and the lack of studies using either real platforms or real data in simulation models.
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Introduction

Grid Computing involves the aggregation of geographically-disperse and heterogeneous resources from different organizations to solve computationally complex problems (Foster, Kesselman, Nick, & Tuecke, 2003; Foster, Kesselman, & Tuecke, 2001).

The rise of wireless technology and mobile devices has increased the number and types of resources to be integrated to the grid. As a result, the concept of grid has been enriched and new categories have emerged (Kurdi, Li, & Al-Raweshidy, 2008). One of these new categories is the Accessible Grid, whose resources are available regardless of their physical capabilities and geographical locations. Accessible Grids consist of a group of mobile or fixed devices with wired or wireless connectivity and predefined or ad hoc infrastructure (Hijab & Avula, 2011). Wireless, mobile, and ad hoc grids belong to this category. Table 1 shows the main characteristics of Accessible Grids with respect to traditional grids.

Table 1.
Characteristics of accessible grids (Kurdi et al., 2008)
Grid categoryMain difference from traditional grids
Ad hoc gridsHave not predefined entry points.
Mobile gridsSupport mobility of clients, services, or both.
Wireless gridsSupport wireless connections between grid nodes and interfaces.

In Wireless Grids, wireless devices can be either resource providers, which contribute to data processing and/or storage, or only be mere consumers of grid services (Furthmüller & Waldhorst, 2010). The concept of Mobile Grids is very similar to Wireless Grids concept; in fact, many authors used both terms indistinguishably. While wireless grids integrate resources of varying sizes and capabilities (e.g. sensors, mobile phones, laptops, special instruments, and edge devices), mobile grids make grid services accessible through mobile devices such as PDAs and smartphones (Kurdi et al., 2008). Furthmüller and Waldhorst (2010) define a mobile grid as a grid that includes at least a mobile device. Finally, some researchers strictly define Ad Hoc Grids as grid environments without fixed infrastructures, i.e., all their components are mobile (D. Marinescu, G. Marinescu, Ji, Boloni, & Siegel, 2003; Kurdi et al., 2008). This chapter will focus mainly on wireless and mobile grids where mobile devices are used as resource providers. The terms mobile and wireless grid are used indistinguishably.

The integration of wireless and/or mobile devices to the grid provides advantages for both typical grid users and for owners of mobile devices. At least four advantages have been identified:

Key Terms in this Chapter

Monitoring: Is the process of collecting information about the current status of grid resources.

Wireless Grids: Extend the capability of grid computing to wireless devices. Resources are of varying sizes and capabilities (e.g. sensors, mobile phones, laptops, special instruments, and edge devices).

Scheduling: Resource scheduling is to divide the job submitted in mobile grid into many sub tasks, selects appropriate resources for execution, predicts the potential performance for each candidate schedule, and determines the best schedule for the job subject to some performance goals.

Resource Discovery: Involves the location of resources that satisfy a set of requirements given in a query.

Checkpointing: Is the process of saving the state of a process or task.

Mobile Device: Is a small, handheld computing device, typically having a touch or non-touch display screen and/or a miniature keyboard whose weigh is less than 2 pounds; a mobile device also has an operating system, and can run various types of application software, known as apps.

Mobile Grids: Grids whose resources and services are accessible through mobile devices such as PDAs and smartphones. Mobile devices can act as interface to Grid resource or as grid resource providers.

Grid Computing: Is the aggregation of geographically-disperse and heterogeneous resources from different organizations to solve computationally complex problems.

Task Replication: Is the creation of identical copies of an original task on separate devices.

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