Extending ACID Semantics to the File System

Amino is Charles Wright's thesis topic.

Tryptophan, an essential Amino ACID  

An organization's data is often its most valuable asset, but today's file systems provide few facilities to ensure its safety. Databases, on the other hand, have long provided transactions. Transactions are useful because they provide atomicity, consistency, isolation, and durability (ACID). Many applications could make use of these semantics, but databases have a wide variety of non-standard interfaces. For example, applications like mail servers currently perform elaborate error handling to ensure atomicity and consistency, because it is easier than using a DBMS. A transaction-oriented programming model eliminates complex error-handling code, because failed operations can simply be aborted without side effects. We have designed a file system that exports ACID transactions to user-level applications, while preserving the ubiquitous and convenient POSIX interface. In our prototype ACID file system, called Amino, updated applications can protect arbitrary sequences of system calls within a transaction. Unmodified applications operate without any changes, but each system call is transaction protected. We also built a recoverable memory library with support for nested transactions to allow applications to keep their in-memory data structures consistent with the file system. Our performance evaluation shows that ACID semantics can be added to applications with acceptable overheads. When Amino adds atomicity, consistency, and isolation functionality to an application, it performs close to Ext3. Amino achieves durability up to 27% faster than Ext3, thanks to improved locality.

Journal Articles:

# Title (click for html version) Formats Published In Date Comments
1 Extending ACID Semantics to the File System PS PDF BibTeX ACM Transactions on Storage (TOS) Jun 2007  

Conference and Workshop Papers:

# Title (click for html version) Formats Published In Date Comments
1 Rapid File System Development Using ptrace PS PDF BibTeX Proceedings of the Workshop on Experimental Computer Science (EXPCS 2007), in conjunction with ACM FCRC Jun 2007  

Technical Reports:

# Title (click for html version) Formats Published In Date Comments
1 Extending ACID Semantics to the File System via ptrace PS PDF BibTeX Stony Brook U. CS TechReport FSL-06-04 May 2006 Ph.D. Thesis
2 Extending ACID Semantics to the File System BibTeX Stony Brook U. CS TechReport FSL-06-01 Jan 2006  

Past Students:

# Name (click for home page) Program Period Current Location
1 Gopalan Sivathanu PhD Sep 2003 - May 2008 Software Engineer, Systems Infrastructure group, Google (Mountain View, CA)
2 Rick Spillane PhD Jan 2008 - Feb 2012 Member of Technical Staff, Vmware Inc. (Palo Alto, CA)
3 Charles P. Wright PhD May 2003 - May 2006 Partner, Senior Software Architect, Illumon (New York, NY)
4 Ramya Edara MS Jan 2007 - Dec 2007 Member of Technical Staff, Arista Networks (Menlo Park, California)
5 Rick Spillane BS/MS Jan 2005 - Dec 2007 Stony Brook U. CS Ph.D. program (Stony Brook, NY)


# Sponsor Amount Period Type Title (click for award abstract)
1 NSF CSR--PDOS $561,727 2006-2009 Lead-PI Support for Atomic Sequences of File System Operations
2 NSF Trusted Computing (TC) $400,000 2003-2006 Sole PI A Layered Approach to Securing Network File Systems