Tuesday, November 13, 2012

XtreemFS 1.4 released at Supercomputing 2012

Salt Lake City, Utah. Today we released XtreemFS 1.4, a new stable release of the cloud file system XtreemFS. This release is the result of almost one thousand changes ("commits") to the code repository, and extensive testing throughout the year. We worked both on major improvements to the existing code and new features:

  • Improved stability: Clients and servers are rock solid now. In particular, we fixed client crashes due to network timeouts and issues with the Read/Write file replication.
  • Asynchronous writes: Once enabled (mount option "--enable-async-writes"), write() requests will be executed in the background. This improves the write throughput without weakening semantics. We recommend to enable async writes.
  • Windows Client (beta): Complete rewrite based on the stable C++ libxtreemfs and using the Dokan alternative Callback File System by EldoS corporation. Try it by mounting our public demo server!
  • Hadoop support: Use XtreemFS as replacement for HDFS in your Hadoop setup. This version of XtreemFS comes with a rewritten Hadoop client based libxtreemfs for Java which also provides data locality information to Hadoop.
  • libxtreemfs for Java: Access XtreemFS directly from your Java application. See the user guide for more information.
  • Vivaldi integration: The Vivaldi replica placement and selection policies enable clients to select close-by replicas based on actual network latencies. These latencies are estimated using virtual network coordinates which are also visualized in the DIR web-interface. Check out the demonstration on the web-interface of our public demo server.
  • Extended OSD Selection: Now you can assign custom attributes to OSDs and limit the placement of files on OSDs based on those attributes.

This version also includes an updated version of the DIR/MRC replication and adds fail-over support for DIR replicas. As DIR/MRC replication is still in a very early stage this feature is intended as technology preview for more experimental users.

We are currently at the Supercomputing 2012 exhibition where we present XtreemFS at the Contrail booth #2535 as part of the Contrail project. Since the event takes place in Salt Lake City, Utah, we decided for "Salty Sticks" as release name for the 1.4 version.

Request for Contributions
As XtreemFS is an open source project, we are always looking forward to external contributions and we believe that this release serves as an ideal starting point for that. Here's an incomplete list of things you might be interested to contribute:
  • chef recipe or puppet configuration for automatic deployment
  • a fancy Qt GUI for the client
  • S3-compatible interface based on the client library libxtreemfs
  • direct integration with Qemu/KVM using the C++ libxtreemfs

XtreemFS Survey
At last, do not forget to fill out our survey if you use/have used/plan XtreemFS.