- July 11, 2023Research
Large-scale machine learning
Today, training most powerful models often takes significant resources. Our research aims to make large-scale training more efficient and accessible to the entire machine learning community.
- ICML, 2023
The high computational and memory requirements of large language model (LLM) inference make it feasible only with multiple high-end accelerators. Motivated by the emerging demand for latency-insensitive tasks with batched processing, this paper initiates the study of high-throughput LLM inference using limited resources, such as a single commodity GPU. We present FlexGen, a high-throughput generation engine for running LLMs with limited GPU memory. FlexGen can be flexibly configured under various hardware resource constraints by aggregating memory and computation from the GPU, CPU, and disk. By solving a linear programming problem, it searches for efficient patterns to store and access tensors. FlexGen further compresses the weights and the attention cache to 4 bits with negligible accuracy loss. These techniques enable FlexGen to have a larger space of batch size choices and thus significantly increase maximum throughput. As a result, when running OPT-175B on a single 16GB GPU, FlexGen achieves significantly higher throughput compared to state-of-the-art offloading systems, reaching a generation throughput of 1 token/s for the first time with an effective batch size of 144. On the HELM benchmark, FlexGen can benchmark a 30B model with a 16GB GPU on 7 representative sub-scenarios in 21 hours. The code is available at https://github.com/FMInference/FlexGen.
- ICML, 2023
Many deep learning applications benefit from using large models with billions of parameters. Training these models is notoriously expensive due to the need for specialized HPC clusters. In this work, we consider alternative setups for training large models: using cheap "preemptible" instances or pooling existing resources from multiple regions. We analyze the performance of existing model-parallel algorithms in these conditions and find configurations where training larger models becomes less communication-intensive. Based on these findings, we propose SWARM parallelism, a model-parallel training algorithm designed for poorly connected, heterogeneous and unreliable devices. SWARM creates temporary randomized pipelines between nodes that are rebalanced in case of failure. We empirically validate our findings and compare SWARM parallelism with existing large-scale training approaches. Finally, we combine our insights with compression strategies to train a large Transformer language model with 1B shared parameters (approximately 13B before sharing) on preemptible T4 GPUs with less than 200Mb/s network.
- ICML, 2022
Many areas of deep learning benefit from using increasingly larger neural networks trained on public data, as is the case for pre-trained models for NLP and computer vision. Training such models requires a lot of computational resources (e.g., HPC clusters) that are not available to small research groups and independent researchers. One way to address it is for several smaller groups to pool their computational resources together and train a model that benefits all participants. Unfortunately, in this case, any participant can jeopardize the entire training run by sending incorrect updates, deliberately or by mistake. Training in presence of such peers requires specialized distributed training algorithms with Byzantine tolerance. These algorithms often sacrifice efficiency by introducing redundant communication or passing all updates through a trusted server, making it infeasible to apply them to large-scale deep learning, where models can have billions of parameters. In this work, we propose a novel protocol for secure (Byzantine-tolerant) decentralized training that emphasizes communication efficiency.