A Solution to the Network Challenges of Data Recovery in Erasure-coded Distributed Storage Systems: A Study on the Facebook Warehouse Cluster

USENIX Workshop on Hot Topics in Storage and File Systems (HotStorage)


Erasure codes, such as Reed-Solomon (RS) codes, are being increasingly employed in data centers to combat the cost of reliably storing large amounts of data. Although these codes provide optimal storage efficiency, they require significantly high network and disk usage during recovery of missing data.

In this paper, we first present a study on the impact of recovery operations of erasure-coded data on the data-center network, based on measurements from Facebook’s warehouse cluster in production. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study of its kind available in the literature. Our study reveals that recovery of RS-coded data results in a significant increase in network traffic, more than a hundred terabytes per day, in a cluster storing multiple petabytes of RS-coded data.

To address this issue, we present a new storage code using our recently proposed Piggybacking framework, that reduces the network and disk usage during recovery by 30% in theory, while also being storage optimal and supporting arbitrary design parameters. The implementation of the proposed code in the Hadoop Distributed file System (HDFS) is underway. We use the measurements from the warehouse cluster to show that the proposed code would lead to a reduction of close to fifty terabytes of cross-rack traffic per day.

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