On the Performance Analysis of Large Scale, Dynamic, Distributed and Parallel Systems
Sammanfattning: Evaluating the performance of large distributed applications is an important and non-trivial task. With the onset of Internet wide applications there is an increasing need to quantify reliability, dependability and performance of these systems, both as a guide in system design as well as a means to understand the fundamental properties of large-scale distributed systems. Previous research has mainly focused on either formalised models where system properties can be deduced and verified using rigorous mathematics or on measurements and experiments on deployed applications. Our aim in this thesis is to study models on an abstraction level lying between the two ends of this spectrum. We adopt a model of distributed systems inspired by methods used in the study of large scale system of particles in physics and model the application nodes as a set of interacting particles each with an internal state whose actions are specified by the application program. We apply our modeling and performance evaluation methodology to four different distributed and parallel systems. The first system is the distributed hash table (DHT) Chord running in a dynamic environment. We study the system under two scenarios. First we study how performance (in terms of lookup latency) is affectedon a network with finite communication latency. We show that an average delay in conjunction with other parameters describing changes in the network (such as timescales for network repair and join and leave processes)induces fundamentally different system performance. We also verify our analytical predictions via simulations.In the second scenario we introduce network address translators (NATs) to the network model. This makes the overlay topology non-transitive and we explore the implications of this fact to various performance metrics such as lookup latency, consistency and load balance. The latter analysis is mainly simulation based.Even though these two studies focus on a specific DHT, many of our results can easily be translated to other similar ring-based DHTs with long-range links, and the same methodology can be applied evento DHT's based on other geometries.The second type of system studied is an unstructured gossip protocol running a distributed version of the famous Belman-Ford algorithm. The algorithm, called GAP, generates a spanning tree over the participating nodes and the question we set out to study is how reliable this structure is(in terms of generating accurate aggregate values at the root) in the presence of node churn. All our analytical results are also verified using simulations.The third system studied is a content distribution network (CDN) of interconnected caches in an aggregation access network. In this model, content which sits at the leaves of the cache hierarchy tree, is requested by end users. Requests can then either be served by the first cache level or sent further up the tree. We study the performance of the whole system under two cache eviction policies namely LRU and LFU. We compare our analytical results with traces from related caching systems.The last system is a work stealing heuristic for task distribution in the TileraPro64 chip. This system has access to a shared memory and is therefore classified as a parallel system. We create a model for the dynamic generation of tasks as well as how they are executed and distributed among the participating nodes. We study how the heuristic scales when the number of nodes exceeds the number of processors on the chip as well as how different work stealing policies compare with each other. The work on this model is mainly simulation-based.
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