Amoeba Paper Presentation & Seminar

The development of high speed LANs and cheap powerful microprocessors has lead to the creation of computing systems composed of large no. of CPUs connected by a high-speed LAN. These are called Distributed Systems. The most important features of distributed systems are that it offers better price/performance, higher computing power (speed), higher fault tolerance, improved scalability, data and device sharing and better distribution of load. An OS which manages a distributed system is called a distributed operating system. A DOS is designed to take a collection of machines and make them act together as a single integrated system. In general, users are not aware of the number and location of neither the processors that run their commands, nor of the number and location of the file servers that store their files. Ex. of DOS are Sprite, Mach, Amoeba, Chorus and DCE. This paper discusses the Amoeba DOS and its inherent advantages vis--vis other DOS. First we will explore its system architecture (i.e. functional classes of machines and on which machines Amoeba runs) and its unique microkernel.

Objects and Capabilities which are the basic unifying concept underlying all the Amoeba servers and the services are then explained. We will also examine process management, memory management, and the communication primitives, emphasizing the latter since this contains the most new ideas like point-to-point communication, group communication and FLIP protocol. Process Management includes how processes are handled, the process descriptor and threads. Memory Management defines the design goals behind its implementation, segments and mapped segments. The main services of Amoeba are implemented in the servers, which therefore form an integral part of the Amoeba distributed operating system. So in the last part of the paper attention is focused on the main servers. KEYWORDS classes of machines microkernel objects capabilities -object protection - process handling - process descriptor - thread syncrhonization segment - mapped segment group communication - history buffer FLIP - bullet server- immutable - directory server - replication

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