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IS&T Seminar: Programmable Storage Systems

August 21, 2013
Time: 3:00 - 4:00 PM
Location: TA-3, Bldg. 1690, Room 102 (CNLS Conference Room)

Speaker:  Carlos Maltzahn, University of California, Santa Cruz

Abstract:  With the advent of open source parallel file systems a new usage pattern emerges: users isolate subsystems of parallel file systems and put them in contexts not foreseen by the original designers, e.g. an object-based storage back end gets a new REST-ful front end to become Amazon Web Service's S3 compliant key value store, or a data placement function becomes a placement function for customer accounts. This trend shows a desire for the ability to use existing file system services and compose them to implement new services. We call this ability "programmable storage systems".

In this talk I will argue that by designing programmability into storage systems has the following benefits: (1) we are achieving greater separation of storage performance engineering from storage reliability engineering, making it possible to optimize storage systems in a wide variety of ways without risking years of investments into code hardening; (2) we are creating an environment that encourages people to create a new stack of storage systems abstractions, both domain-specific and across domains, including sophisticated optimizers that rely on machine learning techniques;  (3) we inform commercial parallel file system vendors on the design of low-level APIs for their products so that they match the versatility of open source storage systems without having to release their entire code into open source; and (4) use this historical opportunity to leverage the tension between the versatility of open source storage systems and the reliability of proprietary systems to lead the community of storage system designers.

I will illustrate programmable storage with an overview of programming abstractions that we have found useful so far, and if time permits, talk about "scriptable storage systems" and the interesting new possibilities of truly data-centered software engineering it enables.

Carlos Maltzahn is an Associate Adjunct Professor at the Computer Science Department of the Jack Baskin School of Engineering, Director of the UCSC Systems Research Lab and Director of the UCSC/Los Alamos Institute for Scalable Scientific Data Management at the University of California at Santa Cruz. Carlos Maltzahn’s current research interests include scalable file system data and metadata management, storage QoS, data management games, network intermediaries, information retrieval, and cooperation dynamics.

Carlos Maltzahn joined UC Santa Cruz in December 2004 after five years at Network Appliance. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 1999, his M.S. in Computer Science in 1997, and his Univ. Diplom Informatik from the University of Passau, Germany in 1991.

For more information contact the technical host Curt Canada, cvc@lanl.gov, 665-7453 or James Ahrens, ahrens@lanl.gov, 667-5797.

Download announcement here.

Hosted by the Information Science and Technology Institute (ISTI)

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