Skip navigation
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Title: Stronger Abstractions and Performance Guarantees for Building Strongly Consistent Distributed Services
Authors: Hodsdon, Christopher Charles
Advisors: LloydKatz-Bassett, WyattEthan AB
Contributors: Computer Science Department
Subjects: Computer science
Issue Date: 2023
Publisher: Princeton, NJ : Princeton University
Abstract: Strongly consistent distributed services require complex coordination among the services’ machines. Building these services thus requires designing and reasoning about complex coordination. To make building strongly consistent distributed services easier, designers build services atop abstractions that simplify reasoning about the service. Two abstractions used today are the multi-sequence abstraction and replicated state machines. The multi-sequence abstraction simplifies ordering operations on sharded data; it explicitly orders the operations on each shard it accesses. Existing implementations have two shortcomings: failures can result in some multi-sequence numbers never being assigned, exposing a noncontiguous multi-sequence, which requires designing and implementing complex coordination in the form of consensus to handle, and existing implementations do not scale. The replicated state machine (RSM) abstraction is used by many of today’s services to ensure correctness and resilience despite failures. It provides the abstraction of “a single machine that does not fail.” However, with RSM protocols used today, an individual slow replica can slow the entire RSM. RSMs are commonly geo-distributed, but current state- of-the-art protocols that provide the stronger slowdown-tolerant abstraction do not have comparable latency to the state-of-practice in a wide-area network or are unable to handle certain types of slowdowns. This dissertation shows that it is possible to build systems that strengthen both abstractions while providing performance guarantees. First, we posit that sequencers should expose our new contiguous multi-sequence abstraction. Contiguity guarantees every sequence number is assigned an operation, simplifying and strengthening the abstraction. Without scalability in the implementation of the contiguous multi-sequence, a service would need to be redesigned once it has outgrown the implementation. We design and implement MASON, the first system to expose the contiguous multi-sequence abstraction and the first to provide a scalable multi-sequence. MASON is thus an ideal building block for consistent, scalable services. Our evaluation shows MASON unlocks scalable throughput for two strongly consistent services built on it. Second, we seek to provide the stronger RSM abstraction of “a single machine that does not slow down” with Avicenna, a slowdown-tolerant replicated state machine protocol that has comparable latency to the current state-of-practice in the wide-area.
Type of Material: Academic dissertations (Ph.D.)
Language: en
Appears in Collections:Computer Science

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
Hodsdon_princeton_0181D_14625.pdf1.07 MBAdobe PDFView/Download

Items in Dataspace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.