Eris: Coordination-Free Consistent Transactions using Network Multi-Sequencing

Proceedings of the 26th ACM Symposium on Operating Systems Principles (SOSP '17) |

Distributed storage systems aim to provide strong consistency and isolation guarantees on an architecture that is partitioned across multiple shards for scalability and replicated for fault-tolerance. Traditionally, achieving all of these goals has required an expensive combination of atomic commitment and replication protocols — introducing extensive coordination overhead. Our system, Eris, takes a very different approach. It moves a core piece of concurrency control functionality, which we term multi-sequencing, into the datacenter network itself. This network primitive takes on the responsibility for consistently ordering transactions, and a new lightweight transaction protocol ensures atomicity.
The end result is that Eris avoids both replication and transaction coordination overhead: we show that it can process a large class of distributed transactions in a single round-trip from the client to the storage system without any explicit coordination between shards or replicas. It provides atomicity, consistency, and fault-tolerance with less than 10% overhead — achieving throughput 4.5–35x higher and latency 72–80% lower than a conventional design on standard benchmarks.