An architecture for a wide area distributed system

Philip Homburg, Maarten van Steen, Andrew S. Tanenbaum

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Distributed systems provide sharing of resources and information over a computer network. A key design issue that makes these systems attractive is that all aspects related to distribution are transparent to users. Unfortunately, general-purpose wide area distributed systems that allow users to share and manage arbitrary resources in a transparent way hardly exist. In particular, they generally do not take into account the most important properties that characterize wide area systems: 1) A very large number of users and resources, 2) an inherent latency problem caused by the distance between nodes, 3) heterogeneity due to a variety of underlying operating systems and networks, and 4) involvement of multiple administrative organizations.The research described in this paper is part of the Globe Project (Globe stands for GLobal Object Based Environment). The goal of this project is the design and implementation of a wide area distributed system that provides a convenient programming abstraction and full transparency. The main contribution of this paper is the description of a new system for distributed shared objects. In contrast to other systems, the implementation of distribution, consistency, and replication of state is completely encapsulated in a distributed shared object. This allows for object-specific solutions, and provides the right mechanism for building efficient and truly scalable systems.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 9 Sep 1996
Externally publishedYes
Event7th Workshop on ACM SIGOPS European Workshop: Systems Support for Worldwide Applications, EW 1996 - Connemara, Ireland, Connemara, Ireland
Duration: 9 Sep 199611 Sep 1996
Conference number: 7


Conference7th Workshop on ACM SIGOPS European Workshop: Systems Support for Worldwide Applications, EW 1996
Abbreviated titleEW 1996
Other8-11 September 1996


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