Multicore for Database Systems: friend... or foe? – Københavns Universitet

Multicore for Database Systems: friend... or foe?

Talk by Anastasia Ailamaki, Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne


Moore's law implications and technology scaling constraints are leading to doubling of the number of processors per chip every 18 months. In spite of such scalability in raw hardware resources, conventional server software is not likely to exhibit performance scalability on par with hardware, because the software has primarily targeted multi-chip multiprocessor systems and has been oblivious to resource contention among threads.

In this talk, I will first present recent results from a careful evaluation of database performance scaling trends on future chip multiprocessors indicating that with current trends larger and slower on-chip caches, absolute database performance not only does not increase, but it is actually likely to dip because the software primary working sets are typically only in the order of a few megabytes. I will then give an overview of Staged Database Servers, a novel paradigm for breaking service-oriented applications into a pipeline of self-encapsulated micro-servers to enhance parallelism, memory reuse, and software robustness. Finally, I will outline the travelogue towards creating a truly multi-threaded database storage manager, Shore-MT.

The talk is open to all interested parties. 


Anastasia (Natassa) Ailamaki has received a B.Sc. degree in Computer Engineering from the Polytechnic School of the University of Patra, Greece (1990), M.Sc. degrees from the Technical University of Crete, Greece (1993) and from the University of Rochester, NY (1996), and a Ph.D. degree in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (2000). In 2001 she joined the Computer Science Department at Carnegie Mellon University, first as an assistant and then as an associate professor.

In 2008 she joined the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland as a full professor. Her research interests are in the broad area of database systems and applications, with emphasis on database system behavior on modern processor hardware and disks. Her projects at Carnegie Mellon (including Staged Database Systems, Cache-Resident Data Bases, and the Fates Storage Manager), aim at building systems to strengthen the interaction between the database software and the underlying hardware and I/O devices. In addition, she is working on automated schema design and computational database support for scientific applications, storage device modeling and performance prediction, as well as internet query caching.

Natassa has received a Sloan Research Fellowship (2005), six best-paper awards (VLDB 2001, Performance 2002, VLDB PhD Workshop 2003, ICDE 2004, FAST 2005, and ICDE 2006 (demo)), an NSF CAREER award (2002), and IBM Faculty Partnership awards in 2001, 2002, and 2003. In 2007, she received a Finmeccanica endowed chair from the Computer Science Department at Carnegie Mellon, and a European Young Investigator Award from the European Science Foundation. She is a member of IEEE and ACM, and has also been a CRA-W mentor