SCIENCE CHINA Information Sciences, Volume 61, Issue 9: 092110(2018) https://doi.org/10.1007/s11432-017-9292-9

Asymmetric virtual machine replication for low latency and high available service

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  • ReceivedJul 16, 2017
  • AcceptedNov 14, 2017
  • PublishedJun 20, 2018


Providing fault tolerance support to client-to-server applications is criticalin the data center and cloud computing environments.Virtualization provides a direct way of achieving high availability byencapsulating the protected applications into the virtual machine andby periodically checkpointing the entire virtual machine (VM) state to the backup replication.However, existing VM replication solutions suffer fromeither excessive checkpointing overhead and network latencyor unnecessary CPU resources consumption in backup replication.In this study, we exploit the ingredients of output packetsand consider that the replication system maintains external consistencyif the pre-released packets originate the already synchronized states.Furthermore, we transform the active-active primary and slave VM combination intoan active-semiactive one by shrinking the number of active virtual CPUs (vCPUs) in the slave VM.The former optimization mechanism improves the performance in read-mostly client-to-server networked applications,whereas the latter one relieves the problem of double scheduling in the slave host.Therefore, we proposed the COLO+ system which is built over COLO and isa non-stop service solution with coarse-grained lock-stepping VMs for client-to-server systems.The two plus signs represent two of the optimizations.Experimental results using COLO+ implemented on KVM and Linux depict thatit achieves nearly native VM performance under read-mostly workloads, as well aslower scheduling overhead in backup replication.


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