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k-mutual exclusion is an important problem for resource-intensive peer-to-peer applications ranging from aggregation to file download. In order to be practically useful, k-mutual exclusion algorithms not only need to be safe and live, but they also need to be fair across hosts. The authors propose a new solution to the k-mutual exclusion problem that provides a notion of time-based fairness. Specifically, the algorithm attempts to minimize the spread of access time for the critical resource. While a client's access time is the time between it requesting and accessing the resource, the spread is defined as a system-wide metric that measures some notion of the variance of access times across a homogeneous host population, e.g., difference between max and mean.
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