Updated : Nov 16, 2021 in Art

BUTLER LAMPSON HINTS FOR COMPUTER SYSTEM DESIGN PDF

Hints for computer system design, Published by ACM . Butler W. Lampson, Howard E. Sturgis, Reflections on an operating system design, Communications of. Butler Lampson’s “Hints for Computer System Design”. I recently read Butler Lampson’s immensely wonderful paper “Hints for Computer. Butler Lampson as recently updated his paper. Slides: Slides/Hints%20and%20principles%20(HLF.

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Especially as the cost of hardware declines, a straightforward, easily analyzed solution that requires a lot of special-purpose computing cycles is better than a dseign, poorly characterized one that may work well if certain assumptions are satisfied. Usually it is also the most difficult, since the interface design must satisfy three conflicting requirements: It is much better to have basic operations executed quickly than more powerful ones that are slower of course, a fast, powerful operation is best, if you know how to get it.

Making a system reliable is not really hard, if you know how to go about it. A bit dated and overgeneralised. It may have cesign written inbut the fundamental challenges in building computer systems that Lampson outlines still ring very true today: The Morning Paper delivered straight to your inbox. You are commenting using your Twitter hutler.

And there is tension with the desire not to hide power. Notify me of new posts via email. Split resources in a fixed way lampsin in doubt, rather than sharing them.

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But retrofitting reliability to an existing design is very difficult. As the system evolves over time, …there is a constant tension between the desire to improve a design and the butller for stability or continuity.

Make it fast, rather than general or powerful. Obviously, it is easier to program and modify a system if its parts make fewer assumptions about each other. The system has much more internal structure, and hence many internal interfaces. To use the technique, record every update to an object as a log entry consisting of the name of the update procedure and its arguments.

Excerpts from Butler Lampson’s “Hints for Computer System Design”

Post was not sent – check your email addresses! Many of the hints help us to think about the trade-offs between simplicity, consistency, correctness, and completeness.

This also applies to processing when resources are limited: Use background processing when possible Cache answers to expensive computations Static analysis and dynamic translation JIT can both improve performance for certain classes of programs and inputs Use batch processing if possible: Interfaces My favourite section of the paper is the advice on designing interfaces.

Obviously, it is easier to program and modify a system if its parts make fewer assumptions about each other. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Make actions atomic or restartable.

Hints for Computer System Design () [pdf] | Hacker News

Lampson gives the example of parsers that do context-free recognition but call out to client-supplied semantic routines to record the results of the parse. Bear in mind when allocating resources that its better to strive to avoid disaster than to attain an optimum. An interface should capture the minimum essentials of an abstraction. Doing things incrementally almost always costs more… Also, batch processing permits much simpler sesign recovery.

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For each, Lampson gives examples from real systems. Pushing towards maximum utilisation can drastically degrade services. For basic interfaces shared by many parts of the system, stability is highly desirable.

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Excerpts from Butler Lampson’s “Hints for Computer System Design”

An interface should capture the minimum essentials of an abstraction. One way to combine simplicity, flexibility, and high performance is to focus only on solving one problem, and leaving the rest up to the client. The only true reliability is end-to-end, though relying on this exclusively can hide severe performance fot that only appear when the system is under heavy load.