GEMS: Gossip-Enabled Monitoring Service for Heterogeneous Distributed Systems

Gossip protocols provide a scalable means for detecting failures in heterogeneous distributed systems in an asynchronous manner without the limits associated with group communication. In this paper, we discuss the development and features of a hierarchical Gossip-Enabled Monitoring Service (GEMS), which extends the gossip style failure detection service to support resource monitoring. By dividing the system into groups of nodes and layers of communication, the GEMS paradigm scales well. Easily extensible, GEMS incorporates facilities for distributing arbitrary system and application-specific data. In this paper we present experiments and analytical projections demonstrating fast response times and low resource utilization requirements, making GEMS a superior solution for resource monitoring issues in distributed computing. Also, we demonstrate the utility of GEMS through the development of a simple dynamic load balancing service for which GEMS forms the information base.
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