MEMSCALE: A Scalable Environment for Databases
In this paper we propose a new memory architec- ture for clusters referred to as MEMSCALE. This architecture provides a distributed non-coherent shared-memory view of the memory resources present in the cluster. With this aggregation technique, a given processor can directly access any memory address located at other nodes in the cluster and, therefore, the whole memory present in the cluster can be granted to a single application. In this study we focus on in-memory databases as a memory- hungry application in order to show the possibilities of our new architecture. To prove the feasibility of our idea, a 16- node prototype cluster serves as a demonstrator. Part of the memory in each node is used to create a global memory pool of 128GB which hosts an entire database. First we show that providing more memory than usually available in a typical commodity node for a database server makes the execution of queries more than one order of magnitude faster than using regular SSD drives. After that, we go one step further and show that simultaneously accessing the database from all the nodes in the cluster converts our prototype into a powerful database server capable of beating current commercial solutions in terms of latency and throughput.