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AKARA: A Flexible Clustering Protocol for Demanding Transactional Workloads

By A. Correia, Jr. J. Pereira and R. Oliveira


Shared-nothing clusters are a well known and cost-effective approach to database server scalability, in particular, with highly intensive read-only workloads typical of many 3-tier web-based applications. The common reliance on a centralized component and a simplistic propagation strategy employed by mainstream solutions however conduct to poor scalability with traditional on-line transaction processing (OLTP), where the update ratio is high. Such approaches also pose an additional obstacle to high availability while introducing a single point of failure. More recently, database replication protocols based on group communication have been shown to overcome such limitations, expanding the applicability of shared-nothing clusters to more demanding transactional workloads. These take simultaneous advantage of total order multicast and transactional semantics to improve on mainstream solutions. However, none has already been widely deployed in a general purpose database management system. In this paper, we argue that a major hurdle for their acceptance is that these proposals have disappointing performance with specific subsets of realworld workloads. Such limitations are deep-rooted and working around them requires in-depth understanding of protocols and changes to applications. We address this issue with a novel protocol that combines multiple transaction execution mechanisms and replication techniques and then show how it avoids the identified pitfalls. Experimental results are obtained with a workload based on the industry standard TPC-C benchmark

Year: 2011
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