GroupCommunication - Group Communication Specications A...

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Group Communication Specifications: A Comprehensive Study GREGORY V. CHOCKLER The Hebrew University of Jerusalem Computer Science Institute IDIT KEIDAR MIT Laboratory for Computer Science AND ROMAN VITENBERG The Technion Department of Computer Science View-oriented group communication is an important and widely used building block for many distributed applications. Much current research has been dedicated to specifying the semantics and services of view-oriented group communication systems (GCSs). However, the guarantees of different GCSs are formulated using varying terminologies and modeling techniques, and the specifications vary in their rigor. This makes it difficult to analyze and compare the different systems. This survey provides a comprehensive set of clear and rigorous specifications, which may be combined to represent the guarantees of most existing GCSs. In the light of these specifications, over 30 published GCS specifications are surveyed. Thus, the specifications serve as a unifying framework for the classification, analysis, and comparison of group communication systems. The survey also discusses over a dozen different applications of group communication systems, shedding light on the usefulness of the presented specifications. This survey is aimed at both system builders and theoretical researchers. The specification framework presented in this article will help builders of group communication systems understand and specify their service semantics; the extensive Categories and Subject Descriptors: C.2.4 [ Computer-Communication Networks ]: Distributed Systems; D.4.7 [ Operating Systems ]: Organization and Design— distributed systems ; F.3.1 [ Logics and Meanings of Programs ]: Specifying and Verifying and Reasoning about Programs— specification techniques ; C.2.1 [ Computer-Communication Networks ]: Network Architecture and Design— network communications General Terms: Algorithms, Reliability, Standardization Additional Key Words and Phrases: Group communication systems, partitionable group membership, process group membership, specifications of group communication systems, view synchrony, virtual synchrony This work is supported by Air Force Aerospace Research (OSR) grant F49620-00-1-0097, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone (NTT) grant MIT9904-12, and by NSF grants ACI-9876931, CCR-9909114, and EIA-9901592. Authors’ addresses: G. V. Chockler, Givat Ram, Jerusalem, 91904 Israel; email: [email protected]; I. Keidar, 545 Technology Square, Cambridge, MA, 02139; email: [email protected]; R. Vitenberg, Technion City, Haifa 32000, Israel; email: [email protected] Permission to make digital/hard copy of part or all of this work for personal or classroom use is granted without fee provided that the copies are not made or distributed for profit or commercial advantage, the copyright notice, the title of the publication, and its date appear, and notice is given that copying is by permission of the ACM, Inc. To copy otherwise, to republish, to post on servers, or to redistribute to lists, requires prior specific permission and/or a fee.
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