Disconnected Operation in a Distributed File System by James J. Kistler

By James J. Kistler

This ebook is predicated at the author's PhD thesis which used to be chosen through the 1993 ACM Doctoral Dissertation pageant as one of many 3 top submissions.
The concentration of this paintings is at the factor of availability in disbursed dossier structures. It provides the real new process referred to as disconnected operation, within which consumers masks disasters and voluntary community detachments by means of emulating the performance of servers the place genuine server-oriented suggestions are insufficient. this allows patron operation even below whole isolation from the server; the fresh integration of cellular pcs into the procedure is a crucial side-effect of the recent procedure. The layout and implementation of disconnected dossier provider in a operating procedure, the Coda dossier process, is defined in detail.

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On-disk caching also contributes to system scalability. It allows much larger - and therefore more eiTective - caches to be used than does a mainm e m o r y caching architecture. Disk caches of several hundred megabytes are not at all unreasonable. Disk caching also means that the cache does not have to be re-loaded on machine reboot, a surprisingly frequent occurrence in m a n y environments. Moreover, a local disk obviates any need for crossnetwork paging, which can be a serious impediment to scalability.

8 contains a description of Coda objects at the sub-object level in C + § syntax. The three object types - plain files, directories, symbolic links - share a common base structure called a rhode (for Vice-inode). This structure contains the attributes and other m e t a - d a t a of an object and corresponds to a Unix inode. The body or d a t a portion of an object is specific to its type. In all three cases the d a t a is specified as a fixed-size array, with each element potentially an independent d a t a item.

Perhaps surprisingly, the details of the specification can have significant effect on the availability that is eventually realized by the algorithm. Three specification issues in particular contribute to increased availability in Coda: - the avoidance of under-specification errors which obscure the true data accesses of computations. the redefinition of certain system call semantics to eliminate non-critical side-effects. - the exploitation of type-specific information to enlarge the subset of the 1SR histories that can be efficiently recognized.

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