Semantically Reliable Multicast Protocols

Josť Pereira, Luís Rodrigues, and Rui Oliveira

Selected sections of this report were published in "Semantically Reliable Multicast Protocols", proceedings of the 19th IEEE Symposium on Reliable Distributed Systems, Nurnberg, Germany, 2000.


Reliable multicast protocols can strongly simplify the design of distributed applications. However, it is hard to sustain a high multicast throughput when groups are large and heterogeneous. In an attempt to overcome this limitation, previous work has focused on weakening reliability properties. In this paper we introduce a novel reliability model that exploits semantic knowledge to decide in which specific conditions messages can be purged without compromising application correctness. This model is based on the concept of message obsolescence: A message becomes obsolete when its content or purpose is overwritten by a subsequent message. We show that message obsolescence can be expressed in a generic way and can be used to configure the system to achieve higher multicast throughput.

Also available extended report (gzip postscript), (pdf) .

Luís Rodrigues