In Search of Simplicity: A Self-Organizing Group Communication Overlay

TitleIn Search of Simplicity: A Self-Organizing Group Communication Overlay
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsRipeanu, M., A. Iamnitchi, I. Foster, and A. Rogers
Conference NameSelf-Adaptive and Self-Organizing Systems, 2007. SASO '07. 1st International Conference on
Pagination371 -374
Date Publishedjul.
Keywordsadaptive system, data dissemination trees, distributed applications, groupware, multicast protocols, network routing, network topology, routing protocols, self-organizing group communication overlay, telecommunication network topology, trees (mathematics), UMM system, unstructured multisource multicast system

Group communication primitives have broad utility as building blocks for distributed applications. The challenge is to create and maintain the distributed structures that support these primitives while accounting for volatile end-nodes and variable network characteristics. Most solutions proposed to date rely on complex algorithms or global information, thus limiting the scale of deployments and acceptance outside the academic realm. This article introduces a low-complexity, self-organizing solution for maintaining multicast trees, that we refer to as UMM (unstructured multi-source multicast). UMM uses traditional distributed systems techniques: layering, soft-state, and passive data collection to adapt to the dynamics of the physical network and maintain data dissemination trees. The result is a simple, adaptive system with lower overheads than more complex alternatives. We have implemented UMM and evaluated it on up to 1024-node emulated ModelNet networks and on the PlanetLab testbed.. Extensive experimental evaluations and quantitative comparisons with alternative solutions demonstrate VMM's low overhead, efficient network usage, and ability to quickly adapt to network changes and to recover from failures.


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