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[PhD Thesis] Reliability Issues in the Design of Distributed Object-Based Architectures
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This thesis is aimed at enhancing the existing set of techniques for building distributed systems, specifically from the point of view of fault-tolerant computing. Reliability is of fundamental importance in the design and operation of distributed systems, as an increasing number of computers are employed in the automation of various essential services. In the past decade, much research effort has been concrned with the object-based methodologyfor the design and implementation of reliable distributed systems. This thesis describes three contributions to this effort. First, it is shown that object-based programming features can in fact be introduced into procedural languages provided taht these languages are endowed with certain facilities. Then, work is discussed which illustrates the relationship between distributed object-based architectures and an apparently different form of distributed architectures based on processes. This work puts the notion of distributed architectures into a new perspective, which shows that the object-based philosophy are the dual of each other. Finally, an important aspect of the design of an object-based distributed architecture is investigated, that of automatic garbage collection. A distributed collection scheme is described that handles fault tolerance by an extension of the technique commonly employed to detect unwanted computations in distributed architectures. The scheme proposed can also be seen as yet further illustration of the link between object-based and process-based architectures.
Computing Laboratory, University of Newcastle upon Tyne
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