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The authors examine the problem of allocating a given total storage budget in a distributed storage system for maximum reliability. A source has a single data object that is to be coded and stored over a set of storage nodes; it is allowed to store any amount of coded data in each node, as long as the total amount of storage used does not exceed the given budget. A data collector subsequently attempts to recover the original data object by accessing only the data stored in a random subset of the nodes. By using an appropriate code, successful recovery can be achieved whenever the total amount of data accessed is at least the size of the original data object.
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