Instrumented high pressure torsion, i.e. mechanical test in a torsion mode under high pressure, allows interesting possibility of materials testing, because materials mechanical response can be studied in a practically unlimited shear strain range. We have studied microstructures formed in initially coarse crystalline and nanocrystalline (nc) Pd and its alloys after instrumented HPT up to shear strain 300, and revealed signatures of similar processes occurring in all these materials. In particular, we found traces of cooperative grain boundary sliding in the form of aligned in parallel segments of boundaries of several grains with straightened triple points. Fracture surfaces contained shear bands. Texture measurements revealed lower dislocation activity in nanocrystalline state as compared with coarse crystalline one. Therefore we argue that cooperative grain boundary sliding is an important deformation mechanism at large strain which develops in both ultrafine grained (ufg) and nanocrystalline materials. In nc and ufg materials planes of cooperative grain boundary sliding act as precursors of shear bands and shear occurs along planes formed by numerous grain boundaries.