Publications

Coelho F, Matos M, Pereira JO, Oliveira R.  2017.  Similarity Aware Shuffling for the Distributed Execution of SQL Window Functions : BPA. Distributed Applications and Interoperable Systems - 17th IFIP WG 6.1 International Conference, DAIS 2017, Held as Part of the 12th International Federated Conference on Distributed Computing Techniques, DisCoTec 2017, Neuchâtel, Switzerland, June 1. :3–18. Abstract

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Pontes R, Pinto M, Barbosa M, Vilaça R, Matos M, Oliveira R.  2017.  Performance trade-offs on a secure multi-party relational database. Proceedings of the Symposium on Applied Computing, {SAC} 2017, Marrakech, Morocco, April 3-7, 2017. :456–461. Abstract
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Maia F, Matos M, Coelho F.  2016.  Towards Quantifiable Eventual Consistency. Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Cloud Computing and Services Science. :368-370. Abstractdatadiversityconvergence_2016_5.pdf

In the pursuit of highly available systems, storage systems began offering eventually consistent data models. These models are suitable for a number of applications but not applicable for all. In this paper we discuss a system that can offer a eventually consistent data model but can also, when needed, offer a strong consistent one.

Cruz F, Maia F, Matos M, Oliveira R, Paulo J, Pereira JO, Vilaça R.  2016.  Resource Usage Prediction in Distributed Key-Value Datastores. Distributed Applications and Interoperable Systems: 16th IFIP WG 6.1 International Conference, DAIS 2016, Held as Part of the 11th International Federated Conference on Distributed Computing Techniques, DisCoTec 2016, Heraklion, Crete, Greece, June 6-9, 2. :144–159. Abstract

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Jorge T, Maia F, Matos M, Pereira JO, Oliveira R.  2015.  Practical Evaluation of Large Scale Applications. Proceedings of the 15th IFIP International Conference on Distributed Applications and Interoperable Systems (DAIS). :124–137. Abstractdais15minhajsr.pdf

Designing and implementing distributed systems is a hard endeavor, both at an abstract level when designing the system, and at a concrete level when implementing, debugging and evaluating it. This stems not only from the inherent complexity of writing and reasoning about distributed software, but also from the lack of tools for testing and evaluating it under realistic conditions. Moreover, the gap between the protocols’ specifications found on research papers and their implementations on real code is huge, leading to inconsistencies that often result in the implementation no longer following the specification. As an example, the specification of the popular Chord DHT comprises a few dozens of lines, while its Java implementation, OpenChord, is close to twenty thousand lines, excluding libraries. This makes it hard and error prone to change the implementation to reflect changes in the specification, regardless of programmers’ skill. Besides, critical behavior due to the unpredictable interleaving of operations and network uncertainty, can only be observed on a realistic setting, limiting the usefulness of simulation tools. We believe that being able to write an algorithm implementation very close to its specification, and evaluating it in a real environment is a big step in the direction of building better distributed systems. Our approach leverages the MINHA platform to offer a set of built in primitives that allows one to program very close to pseudo-code. This high level implementation can interact with off-the-shelf existing middleware and can be gradually replaced by a production-ready Java implementation. In this paper, we present the system design and showcase it using a well-known algorithm from the literature.

Oliveira R, Matos M, Felber P, Sutra P, Rivière E, Schiavoni V.  2015.  TOPiCo: detecting most frequent items from multiple high-rate event streams. DEBS 2015 - . Abstractp58-schiavoni.pdf

Systems such as social networks, search engines or trading platforms operate geographically distant sites that continuously generate streams of events at high-rate. Such events can be access logs to web servers, feeds of messages from participants of a social network, or financial data, among others. The ability to timely detect trends and popularity variations is of paramount importance in such systems. In particular, determining what are the most popular events across all sites allows to capture the most relevant information in near real-time and quickly adapt the system to the load. This paper presents TOPiCo, a protocol that computes the most popular events across geo-distributed sites in a low cost, bandwidth-efficient and timely manner. TOPiCo starts by building the set of most popular events locally at each site. Then, it disseminates only events that have a chance to be among the most popular ones across all sites, significantly reducing the required bandwidth. We give a correctness proof of our algorithm and evaluate TOPiCo using a real-world trace of more than 240 million events spread across 32 sites. Our empirical results shows that (i) TOPiCo is timely and cost-efficient for detecting popular events in a large-scale setting, (ii) it adapts dynamically to the distribution of the events, and (iii) our protocol is particularly efficient for skewed distributions.

Matos M, Mercier H, Felber P, Oliveira R, Pereira JO.  2015.  EpTO: An Epidemic Total Order Algorithm for Large-Scale Distributed Systems. Proceedings of the 16th Annual Middleware Conference. :100–111. Abstractp100-matos.pdf

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Pontes R, Matos M, Oliveira JN, Pereira JO.  2015.  Implementing a Linear Algebra Approach to Data Processing. Grand Timely Topics in Software Engineering - International Summer School {GTTSE} 2015, Braga, Portugal, August 23-29, 2015, Tutorial Lectures. 10223:215–222. Abstract
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Maia F, Matos M, Vilaça R, Pereira JO, Oliveira R, Rivière E.  2014.  DATAFLASKS: epidemic store for massive scale systems. The 33rd IEEE Symposium on Reliable Distributed Systems (SRDS 2014) . Abstractmain.pdf

Very large scale distributed systems provide some of the most interesting research challenges while at the same time being increasingly required by nowadays applications. The escalation in the amount of connected devices and data being produced and exchanged, demands new data management systems. Although new data stores are continuously being proposed, they are not suitable for very large scale environments. The high levels of churn and constant dynamics found in very large scale systems demand robust, proactive and unstructured approaches to data management. In this paper we propose a novel data store solely based on epidemic (or gossip-based) protocols. It leverages the capacity of these protocols to provide data persistence guarantees even in highly dynamic, massive scale systems. We provide an open source prototype of the data store and correspondent evaluation.

Felber P, Pasin M, Rivière E, Schiavoni V, Sutra P, Coelho F, Matos M, Oliveira R, Vilaça R.  2014.  On the Support of Versioning in Distributed Key-Value Stores. 33rd IEEE International Symposium on Reliable Distributed Systems - SRDS. Abstractpaper.pdf

The ability to access and query data stored in multiple versions is an important asset for many applications, such as Web graph analysis, collaborative editing platforms, data forensics, or correlation mining. The storage and retrieval of versioned data requires a specific API and support from the storage layer. The choice of the data structures used to maintain versioned data has a fundamental impact on the performance of insertions and queries. The appropriate data structure also depends on the nature of the versioned data and the nature of the access patterns. In this paper we study the design and implementation space for providing versioning support on top of a distributed key-value store (KVS). We define an API for versioned data access supporting multiple writers and show that a plain KVS does not offer the necessary synchronization power for implementing this API. We leverage the support for listeners at the KVS level and propose a general construction for implementing arbitrary types of data structures for storing and querying versioned data. We explore the design space of versioned data storage ranging from a flat data structure to a distributed sharded index. The resulting system, \system, is implemented on top of an industrial-grade open-source KVS, Infinispan. Our evaluation, based on real-world Wikipedia access logs, studies the performance of each versioning mechanisms in terms of load balancing, latency and storage overhead in the context of different access scenarios.

Campos F, Matos M, Pereira JO, Rua D.  2014.  A peer-to-peer service architecture for the Smart Grid (short paper). 14th IEEE International Conference on Peer-to-Peer Computing - P2P. Abstract222.p2p2014_063.pdf

The Smart Grid vision needs to address hard challenges such as interoperability, reliability and scalability before it can become fulfilled. The need to provide full interoperability between current and future energy and non-energy systems and its disparate technologies along with the problem of seamless discovery, configuration, and communication of a large variety of networked devices ranging from the resource constrained sensing devices to the large machines inside a data center requires an agnostic Service Oriented Architecture. Moreover, the sheer scale of the Smart Grid and the criticality of the communication among its subsystems for proper management, demands a scalable and reliable communication framework able to work in an heterogeneous and dynamic environment. In this position paper, we propose a generic framework, based on Web Services for interoperability, and epidemic or gossip based communication protocols for reliability and scalability, that can serve a general management substrate where several Smart Grid problems can be solved. We illustrate the flexibility of the proposed framework by showing how it can be used in two specific scenarios.

Matos M, Schiavoni V, Rivière E, Felber P, Oliveira R.  2014.  LayStream: composing standard gossip protocols for live video streaming. 14th IEEE International Conference on Peer-to-Peer Computing (P2P). Abstractp2p-laystream.pdf

Gossip-based live streaming is a popular topic, as attested by the vast literature on the subject. Despite the particular merits of each proposal, all need to implement and deal with common challenges such as membership management, topology construction and video packets dissemination. Well-principled gossip-based protocols have been proposed in the literature for each of these aspects. Our goal is to assess the feasibility of building a live streaming system, \sys, as a composition of these existing protocols, to deploy the resulting system on real testbeds, and report on lessons learned in the process. Unlike previous evaluations conducted by simulations and considering each protocol independently, we use real deployments. We evaluate protocols both independently and as a layered composition, and unearth specific problems and challenges associated with deployment and composition. We discuss and present solutions for these, such as a novel topology construction mechanism able to cope with the specificities of a large-scale and delay-sensitive environment, but also with requirements from the upper layer. Our implementation and data are openly available to support experimental reproducibility.

Campos F, Matos M, Pereira JO.  2014.  Coordenação de Serviços Web heterogéneos com tolerância a faltas. INForum - Simpósio de Informática. Abstractinforum-wsgossip.pdf

A norma Devices Profile for Web Services (DPWS) permite a descoberta, a configuração e a interoperabilidade de dispositivos heterogéneos ligados em rede com grande disparidade em termos de capacidade de processamento, desde pequenos eletrodomésticos inteligentes ou controladores em máquinas industriais, até servidores em centros de dados. Os mecanismos de notificação de eventos e de configuração automática previstos pelo DPWS são especialmente adequados a cenários Machine-to-Machine (M2M) devido à sua simplicidade e flexibilidade. No entanto, a escalabilidade em cenários com um elevado número de nós, nomeadamente, em grandes infraestruturas, é limitada. A coerência dos dados armazenados e manipulados pelos mecanismos de autodescoberta também não é adequada a aplicações críticas. Neste artigo, abordamos este problema com uma proposta assente na norma DPWS com os conceitos de difusão epidémica e de consenso, mostrando que é possível compor serviços adequados a diferentes aplicações assegurando garantias de tolerância a faltas e maior escalabilidade.

Cruz F, Maia F, Matos M, Oliveira R, Paulo J, Pereira JO, Vilaça R.  2013.  MeT: Workload aware elasticity for NoSQL. Proceedings of the 8th European Conference on Computer Systems - EuroSys. :183–196. Abstractmet.pdf

NoSQL databases manage the bulk of data produced by modern Web applications such as social networks. This stems from their ability to partition and spread data to all available nodes, allowing NoSQL systems to scale. Unfortunately, current solutions' scale out is oblivious to the underlying data access patterns, resulting in both highly skewed load across nodes and suboptimal node configurations.
In this paper, we first show that judicious placement of HBase partitions taking into account data access patterns can improve overall throughput by 35%. Next, we go beyond current state of the art elastic systems limited to uninformed replica addition and removal by: i) reconfiguring existing replicas according to access patterns and ii) adding replicas specifically configured to the expected access pattern.
MeT is a prototype for a Cloud-enabled framework that can be used alone or in conjunction with OpenStack for the automatic and heterogeneous reconfiguration of a HBase deployment. Our evaluation, conducted using the YCSB workload generator and a TPC-C workload, shows that MeT is able to i) autonomously achieve the performance of a manual configured cluster and ii) quickly reconfigure the cluster according to unpredicted workload changes.

Maia F, Matos M, Vilaça R, Pereira JO, Oliveira R, Rivière E.  2013.  DataFlasks: an epidemic dependable key-value substrate. Proceedings of the 3rd International Workshop on Dependability of Clouds, Data Centers and Virtual Computing Environments (with DSN 2013). Abstractdataflasks_dcdv13.pdf

Recently, tuple-stores have become pivotal struc- tures in many information systems. Their ability to handle large datasets makes them important in an era with unprecedented amounts of data being produced and exchanged. However, these tuple-stores typically rely on structured peer-to-peer protocols which assume moderately stable environments. Such assumption does not always hold for very large scale systems sized in the scale of thousands of machines. In this paper we present a novel approach to the design of a tuple-store. Our approach follows a stratified design based on an unstructured substrate. We focus on this substrate and how the use of epidemic protocols allow reaching high dependability and scalability.