Hatem Takruri, Master’s candidate
David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science
We present FLAIR, a novel approach for accelerating read operations in leader-based consensus protocols. FLAIR leverages the capabilities of the new generation of programmable switches to serve reads from follower replicas without compromising consistency. The core of the new approach is a packet-processing pipeline that can track client requests and system replies, identify consistent replicas, and at line speed, forward read requests to replicas that can serve the read without sacrificing linearizability. An additional benefit of FLAIR is that it facilitates devising novel consistency-aware load balancing techniques.
Following the new approach, we designed FlairKV, a key-value store atop Raft. FlairKV implements the processing pipeline using the P4 programming language. We evaluate the benefits of the proposed approach and compare it to previous approaches using a cluster with a Barefoot Tofino switch. Our evaluation indicates that the proposed approach can bring significant performance gains: up to 43% higher throughput and 35–97% lower latency for most workloads compared to state-of-the-art alternatives.
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