Better Operating System Features for Faster Network Servers

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Executive Summary

Widely-used operating systems provide inadequate support for large-scale Internet server applications. Their algorithms and interfaces fail to efficiently support either event-driven or multi-threaded servers. They provide poor control over the scheduling and management of machine resources, making it difficult to provide robust and controlled service. Authors of this paper propose new UNIX interfaces to improve scalability, and to provide fine-grained scheduling and resource management. The performance of Internet server applications on a general purpose operating system is often dismayingly lower than what one would expect from the underlying hardware.

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