Course on CUDA Programming on NVIDIA GPUs, July 21--25, 2014
The course is now over for another year. It will be given again in 2015,
probably in late July, but possibly in September.
This is a 5-day hands-on course for students, postdocs, academics and
others who want to learn how to develop applications to run on NVIDIA
GPUs using the CUDA programming environment. All that will be assumed
is some proficiency with C and basic C++ programming. No prior experience
with parallel computing will be assumed.
The course consists of approximately 3 hours of lectures and 4 hours
of practicals each day. The aim is that by the end of the course you
will be able to write relatively simple programs and will be confident
and able to continue learning through studying the examples provided
by NVIDIA as part of their SDK (software development kit).
Costs for the course will be as follows:
- free for Oxford undergraduates
- free for postdocs and PhD students working as part of an EPSRC-funded
CCP (Collaborative Computational Project)
- £100 for those from Oxford University and other members of the
e-Infrastructure South consortium (Bristol, Southampton, STFC and UCL)
- £200 for those from other UK universities
- £500 for those from other government labs, not-for-profit organisations,
and foreign universities
- £2000 for those from industry (this will include lunch each day)
This course is being run under several banners:
- for members of all CCPs (Collaborative Computational Projects) with support from the
ASEArch CCP on Algorithms and Software for Emerging Architectures
- for users of the
supercomputer owned jointly by the e-Infrastructure South consortium
(Bristol, Oxford, Southampton, UCL) and STFC
- for HPC students, as part of the
EPSRC Coordinated HPC Training Centre;
EPSRC-supported PhD students may be able to get assistance with their travel
and accommodation costs from this
- for members of the
students/postdocs from the member universities (Bristol, Imperial College, Leeds,
Manchester, Oxford, Queen's Belfast, UCL) can apply for funding
The course is being organised by OeRC
but is being held in the Engineering Science department
-- please come to the main entrance on the first floor (go up the external
stairs to reach an elevated walkway linking several buildings)
on Monday morning at 9:00.
Accommodation and food
Those attending the course must arrange their own accommodation. These three are
within a few minutes walk, and are arranged in order of increasing cost:
The location for the lectures and practicals is marked as A on this
Little Clarendon Street, which is towards the left side of the map,
has several restaurants for dinner, and there are two sandwich
shops for lunch on either side of its junction with the road marked
as the A4144. Towards the bottom of the map, the Lamb & Flag
and The Eagle & Child are two popular pubs.
In addition, there is an Engineering Science common room nearby (turn
left as you leave the Thom building and go straight ahead into the first
building) which is open 9-2 and serves sandwiches, pizza and other snacks.
For the first three days we will follow this timetable:
On the last two days we will switch to having both lectures in the morning,
and then have practicals all afternoon. This will also allow those coming
to Oxford from far away to leave when they wish on Friday afternoon.
- 09:15 - 10:45 lecture
- 10:45 - 11:15 coffee
- 11:15 - 12:45 practical
- 12:45 - 14:00 lunch break
- 14:00 - 15:30 lecture
- 15:30 - 16:00 coffee
- 16:00 - 17:30 practical
Please read chapters 1 and 2 of the
NVIDIA CUDA C Programming Guide.
CUDA is an extension of C/C++, so if you are a little rusty with C/C++
you should refresh your memory of it.
The lectures and practicals below were for the course in 2014 -- they will be
revised for 2015.
Some additional references for the case study:
The practicals will be held in the computer teaching laboratory on the 6th floor
of the Thom building.
We will be working under Linux on the
GPU supercomputer, one of the largest in Europe.
Before starting the practicals, please read these
and have a look at these
The practicals all use these header files
which come from the CUDA SDK. They provide routines for error-checking
Application: a trivial "hello world" example
CUDA aspects: launching a kernel, copying data to/from the graphics card,
error checking and printing from kernel code
Note: the instructions explain how files can be copied from my user account
so there's no need to download from here
Application: Monte Carlo simulation using NVIDIA's CURAND library
for random number generation
CUDA aspects: constant memory, random number generation, kernel timing,
minimising device memory bandwidth requirements
Application: 3D Laplace finite difference solver
CUDA aspects: thread block size optimisation, multi-dimensional memory layout
CUDA aspects: dynamic shared memory, thread synchronisation
Application: using the CUBLAS and CUFFT libraries
Application: revisiting the simple "hello world" example
CUDA aspects: using g++ for the main code, building libraries,
Application: tri-diagonal equations
Application: scan operation and recurrence equations
Application: pattern matching
The following four lectures on OpenCL programming were prepared
by Tom Deakin, based on my CUDA lectures. They are provided here as
an introduction to OpenCL, and to illustrate the similarities and
differences between CUDA and OpenCL.
Many thanks to:
- the e-Infrastructure South consortium and Emerald support staff
for the GPU resources
- the Engineering Science and Computer Science departments for the
lecture room and computer labs
- Istvan Reguly for his guest lectures and help with the practicals
- Clementine Harris for administrative support