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Scale and Performance in a Distributed File System
 

Summary: Scale and Performance in a Distributed
File System
JOHN H. HOWARD, MICHAEL L. KAZAR, SHERRI G. MENEES, DAVID
A. NICHOLS, M. SATYANARAYANAN, ROBERT N. SIDEBOTHAM,
and MICHAEL J. WEST
Carnegie Mellon University
The Andrew File System is a location-transparent distributed tile system that will eventually span
more than 5000 workstations at Carnegie Mellon University. Large scale affects performance and
complicates system operation. In this paper we present observations of a prototype implementation,
motivate changes in the areas of cache validation, server process structure, name translation, and
low-level storage representation, and quantitatively demonstrate Andrew's ability to scale gracefully.
We establish the importance of whole-file transfer and caching in Andrew by comparing its perform-
ance with that of Sun Microsystem's NFS tile system. We also show how the aggregation of files into
volumes improves the operability of the system.
Categories and Subject Descriptors: D.4.3 [Operating Systems]: File Systems Management-
distributed file systems; D.4.8 [Operating Systems]: Performance-measurements
General Terms: Design, Experimentation, Measurement, Performance
Additional Key Words and Phrases: Andrew, caching, operability, scalability, Venus, Vice, Volumes,
whole file transfer
1. INTRODUCTION

  

Source: Arpaci-Dusseau, Remzi - Department of Computer Sciences, Department of Computer Sciences, University of Wisconsin at Madison
Brown, Angela Demke - Department of Computer Science, University of Toronto
California at Davis, University of - Department of Computer Science, Computer Security Laboratory
Cao, Qing "Charles" - Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Tennessee
Han, Richard Y. - Department of Computer Science, University of Colorado at Boulder

 

Collections: Computer Technologies and Information Sciences; Engineering