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8========D~~~

This one’s for you, Cliff.

Don’t forget to lean into it.

Stasis: Flexible Transactional Storage

by Russell Sears & Eric Brewer

An increasing range of applications requires robust support for atomic, durable and concurrent transactions. Databases provide the default solution, but force applications to interact via SQL and to forfeit control over data layout and access mechanisms. We argue there is a gap between DBMSs and file systems that limits designers of data-oriented applications.

Stasis is a storage framework that incorporates ideas from traditional write-ahead logging algorithms and file systems. It provides applications with flexible control over data structures, data layout, robustness, and performance. Stasis enables the development of unforeseen variants on transactional storage by generalizing write-ahead logging algorithms. Our partial implementation of these ideas already provides specialized (and cleaner) semantics to applications.

We evaluate the performance of a traditional transactional storage system based on Stasis, and show that it performs favorably relative to existing systems. We present examples that make use of custom access methods, modified buffer manager semantics, direct log file manipulation, and LSN-free pages. These examples facilitate sophisticated performance optimizations such as zero-copy I/O. These extensions are composable, easy to implement and significantly improve performance.

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