Maximizing Communication Efficiency for Large-scale Training via 0/1 AdamDownload PDF

Published: 01 Feb 2023, Last Modified: 28 Feb 2023ICLR 2023 posterReaders: Everyone
Abstract: 1-bit gradient compression and local steps are two representative techniques that enable drastic communication reduction in distributed SGD. Their benefits, however, remain an open question on Adam-based large model pre-training (e.g. BERT and GPT). In this paper, we demonstrate the non-linearity in Adam causes slow convergence even when 1-bit compression or local steps are individually applied. To alleviate this limitation, we propose \textbf{0/1 Adam} that linearizes each Adam step via approximating its optimizer states using their stale estimates and linear correlation. \textbf{0/1 Adam} performs an Adam-like step to preserve the adaptivity, while its linearity allows utilizing 1-bit compression and local steps simultaneously for wall-clock time speed up. We provide convergence guarantee for \textbf{0/1 Adam} on smooth non-convex objectives. On various large-scale benchmarks such as BERT-Base, BERT-Large, GPT-2 pre-training and ImageNet, we demonstrate on up to 128 GPUs that \textbf{0/1 Adam} is able to reduce up to 87\% of data volume, 54\% of communication rounds, and achieve up to 2$\times$ higher training throughput and end-to-end training time reduction compared to the state-of-the-art baseline 1-bit Adam; while enjoying the same statistical convergence speed and end task model accuracy on GLUE dataset and ImageNet validation set.
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