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From "Skalicky, Sam" <sska...@amazon.com.INVALID>
Subject Performance regression from removing libiomp5.so
Date Wed, 11 Dec 2019 05:35:30 GMT
Hi MXNet community,

I would like to bring your attention to the performance regression that was found [1] between
1.5.1 and 1.6.0 due to removing the libiomp5.so library due to licensing issues. This change
was made since this library has a category x license [2] that is not compatible with the MXNet
Apache license/distribution.

We found that using OpenBLAS instead of MKL BLAS caused a regression from 1500 samples/sec
to 1300 samples/sec a 13.3% regression in training speed for a resnet18 training benchmark
on a C5.18xlarge EC2 instance (with 72 cores). Rebuilding with MKL BLAS showed an increase
in performance to 1600 samples/sec in the 1.6.0 branch.

Please provide your feedback on the licensing issue (are there any work-arounds) and the tradeoff
in performance (is the benefit worth trying to include back into MXNet builds).

Thanks to the efforts of the following folks for working on this issue (in no particular order):
Patric Zhao
Amol Lele
Tao Lv A
Pedro Larroy
Nihal Harish
Chai Bapat
Arjuna Keshavan
Rong Zhang

Thanks!
Sam

[1] https://github.com/apache/incubator-mxnet/issues/16891
[2] https://www.apache.org/legal/resolved.html#category-x

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