Start thinking in parallel… seriously!

Written by Cornelius J. van Dyk on . Posted in Blog

As we move forward with Visual Studio 2010 and the .NET Framework 4.0, it will become more and more important to understand, embrace and implement parallel programming patterns.  Even though SharePoint 2010 still only runs on .NET 3.5, projects and components that doesn’t directly call into SharePoint, can be built upon this framework technology.

With servers now spanning multi proc/multi core (dual proc/hex core for most standard servers today), it means that a traditional single threaded application only leverages 1/24th (12 cores plus hyper-threading) of it’s potential processor power.  Using simple components such as Parallel.For for instance can potentially yield much better performance and throughput to the apps we build.  I’m by no means advocating consuming all 24 cores in your application on the server, but the point is that we should be thinking in parallel mode.

That said, Stephen Toub wrote the nice white paper on the subject.  Yes, it’s 118 pages, but it’s well worth the read, even if just to stimulate peripheral awareness of the parallel shift in coding.  I enjoyed it and I hope you do too! 🙂

The paper is published here:  http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=86b3d32b-ad26-4bb8-a3ae-c1637026c3ee&displaylang=en

For my own reference, I’ve also saved it off to my downloads folder just in case the above link isn’t functional some time in the future.

http://www.cjvandyk.com/blog/Downloads/Patterns%20for%20Parallel%20Programming%20-%20Understanding%20and%20Applying%20Parallel%20Patterns%20with%20the%20.NET%20Framework%204.pdf

Cheers
C




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Cornelius J. van Dyk

Born and raised in South Africa during the 70's I got my start in computers when a game on my Sinclair ZX Spectrum crashed, revealing it's BASIC source code. The ZX had a whopping 48K of memory which was considered to be a lot in the Commodore Vic20 era, but more importantly, it had BASIC built into the soft touch keyboard. Teaching myself to program, I coded my first commercial program at age 15.

After graduating high school at 17, I joined the South African Air Force, graduating the Academy and becoming a Pilot with the rank of First Lieutenant by age 20. After serving my country for six years, I made my way back into computer software.

Continuing my education, I graduated Suma Cum Laude from the Computer Training Institute before joining First National Bank where my work won the Smithsonian Award for Technological Innovation in the field of Banking and Insurance. Soon I met Will Coleman from Amdahl SA, who introduced me to a little known programming language named Huron/ObjectStar. As fate would have it, this unknown language and Y2K brought me to the USA in 1998.

I got involved with SharePoint after playing around with the Beta for SharePoint Portal Server 2003. Leaving my career at Rexnord to become a consultant in 2004, I was first awarded the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional Award for SharePoint in 2005, becoming only the 9th MVP for WSS at the time. I fulfilled a life long dream by pledging allegiance to the Flag as a US citizen in 2006. I met the love of my life and became a private consultant in 2008. I was honored to receive my ninth MVP award for SharePoint Server in 2013.

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