Visiting Lecture Series: Don Porter, "BetrFS: Write-Optimization in a Kernel File System"

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Write-optimized dictionaries (WODs) are a promising building block for storage systems because they have the potential to strictly dominate the performance of B-trees and other common on-disk indexing structures. In particular, WODs can dramatically improve the performance of both small, random writes and large, sequential scans, without harming other operations.

This talk will introduce the basics of write-optimization and the B^\epsilon tree, and will then describe BetrFS, the first in-kernel write-optimized file system. BetrFS contributes a combination of kernel-level techniques to leverage write-optimization in the VFS layer and data structure-level enhancements to meet the requirements of a POSIX file system. Compared to commodity file-systems, such as ext4 and xfs, BetrFS can improve performance by up to orders of magnitude, and generally matches other file systems in the worst cases.



Don Porter is an assistant professor and Kieburtz Young Scholar of Computer Science at Stony Brook University. Porter's research interests broadly involve improving efficiency and security of computer systems. Porter earned his Ph.D. and master's from The University of Texas at Austin, and a bachelor's from Hendrix College. Porter has received awards including the NSF CAREER Award and the Bert Kay Outstanding Dissertation Award from the University of Texas at Austin.


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