Process Migration for Heterogeneous Distributed Systems




The policies and mechanisms for migrating processes in a distributed system become more complicated in a heterogeneous environment, where the hosts may differ in their architecture and operating systems. These distributed systems include a large quantity and great diversity of resources which may not be fully utilized without the means to migrate processes to the idle resources. In this paper, we present a graph model for single process migration which can be used for load balancing as well as other non traditional scenarios such as migration during the graceful degradation of a host. The graph model provides the basis for a layered approach to implementing the mechanisms for process migration in a Heterogeneous Migration Facility (HMF). HMF provides the user with a library to automatically migrate processes and checkpoint data.


This grew out of a question posed by someone in a heterogeneous environment; how could the site migrate processes from (for example) an SGI Iris to a Sun workstation?