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Distributed computing and communication in peer-to-peer networks

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Goldsmith, B (2010) Distributed computing and communication in peer-to-peer networks. PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Abstract

Traditional distributed computing systems are typically complex to implement and costly
to maintain. Furthermore, little comparative work has been done to understand the
performance and usability of these systems for their own sake as well of that of new
approaches that eventuate. The work presented herein addresses both of these problems
by describing the design and implementation of CompTorrent, a simple to implement and
maintain decentralised peer-to-peer computing network, based on techniques used in other,
non-computing peer-to-peer systems. This research also describes a new framework
(WAN-DC) suitable for the comparison of wide area distributed computing systems.
CompTorrent is compared with BOINC and Condor, two traditional distributed computing
systems, using the WAN-DC framework on the same cluster hardware.
WAN-DC consists of a baseline to quantify the size of the cluster hardware
followed by a set of well-known algorithms including calculations of the Mandelbrot set, a
conversion of video formats (Transcode) and a ray-tracing of a benchmarking scene (POV-
Ray). Other experiments include determining the systems underlying overhead with work
units of no load (No Work), as well as work units of ranging sizes in order to measure
where a system becomes acceptably efficient. This last test, One Second, is particularly
useful when comparing different systems and approaches.
Results show that CompTorrent maintains a performance range between that of
BOINC and Condor for all cluster node sizes for the POV-Ray experiment. Transcode
shows CompTorrent is between or better than BOINC and Condor in 50% of cases and,
whilst worse in the other half of experiments, it was only by approximately 15% in the
worst case. Mandelbrot showed results between both distributed systems and, similarly to
POV-Ray, No Work behaves either between or better than the results of both BOINC and
Condor. These, and other, results described within, show that that a distributed processing
system based on a decentralised, peer-to-peer network can provide similar results to
distributed processing systems based on traditional client/server networking architectures.
This work demonstrates a convergence of peer-to-peer and distributed computing
systems which while considered as certain as "death and taxes" (Foster & Iamnitchi 2003)
has not, until now, been formally demonstrated in an academic setting for general purpose
distributed computing where comparable systems exist based on a client-server approach.
It is hoped that this work contributes to the further adoption of "Grassroots" distributed
computing by bringing the ability to host and manage a distributed computing project to a
much wider audience.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: peer-to-peer,p2p,cloud computing,bittorrent,comptorrent,distributed computing,swarm computing
Additional Information:

© 2010 the author

Date Deposited: 10 May 2010 00:15
Last Modified: 11 Mar 2016 05:53
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