Todd has put it much more eloquently.  Comments below:

On 7/20/09 11:50 AM, "Todd Greenwood" <> wrote:

> Flavio, Ted, Henry, Scott, this would perfectly well for my use case
> provided:
>         GROUP A : ZK Servers w/ read/write AND Leader Elections
>         GROUP B : ZK Servers w/ read/write W/O Leader Elections
> So, we can craft this via Observers and Hiererarchial Quorum groups?
> Great. Problem solved.
> When will this be production ready? :o)
> --------------------
> Scott brought up a multi-feature that is very interesting for me.
> Namely:
> 1. Offline ZK servers that sync & merge on reconnect
> The offline servers seems conceptually simple, it's kind of like a
> messaging system. However, the merge and resolve step when two servers
> reconnect might be challenging. Cool idea though.

Yes, this is very useful for WAN use cases.  I've already done something
like it with a hack:
Ensemble A "Master/Central"
"Remote Proxy" N -- embeds its own ZK, and runs two clients.  One Client
connects to Ensemble A and watches a partial sub-graph, propagating that
into its local embedded ZK server.  This subgraph is read-only for those
that access the Proxy.  A second client accesses the local ZK server and
monitors a different subgraph, which it propagates to the Master ensemble.
This is writeable by clients accessing the Proxy and on the Master ensemble
is only written to by this Proxy.

The above is all application enforced. There are constraints on what sort of
things can be built with this, but for the subset of use cases I need over
WAN, its more than enough.

> 2. Partial memory graph subscriptions
> The second idea is partial memory graph subscriptions. This would enable
> virtual ensembles to interract on the same physical ensemble. For my use
> case, this would prevent unnecessary cross talk between nodes on a WAN,
> allowing me to define the subsets of the memory graph that need to be
> replicated, and to whom. This would be a huge scalability win for WAN
> use cases.

Yes, a more general partial graph subscription / ownership framework would
allow for not just better WAN scalability but also (and more critically IMO)
higher reliability.  Often, some large subset of application functionality
is local to one network, and a minority is global and in need of WAN
communication.  In this case, when the WAN breaks one wishes that local
functionality to continue to function, and only those parts truly dependant
on external events to be interrupted.
Currently one has to have separate ensembles to partition data and clunky
'bridge' code to intercommunicate.

It would certainly be more natural if two ZK ensembles could register with
each other, in a 'partial sub-graph publish/subscribe' framework.  It could
almost be like file system mounting:
To subscribe:
subscribe otherEnsemble:port/path/to/otherstuff  /localpath/to/mount/into

Publishing is the same thing -- think of it as a request for a remote ZK
cluster to subscribe to the local ZK's data.

> -Todd
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Scott Carey []
> Sent: Monday, July 20, 2009 11:00 AM
> To:
> Subject: Re: Leader Elections
> Observers would be awesome especially with a couple enhancements /
> extensions:
> An option for the observers to enter a special state if the WAN link
> goes down to the "master" cluster.  A read-only option would be great.
> However, allowing certain types of writes to continue on a limited basis
> would be highly valuable as well.  An observer could "own" a special
> node and its subnodes.  Only these subnodes would be writable by the
> observer when there was a session break to the master cluster, and the
> master cluster would take all the changes when the link is
> reestablished.  Essentially, it is a portion of the hierarchy that is
> writable only by a specitfic observer, and read-only for others.
> The purpose of this would be for when the WAN link goes down to the
> "master" ZKs for certain types of use cases - status updates or other
> changes local to the observer that are strictly read-only outside the
> Observer's 'realm'.
> On 7/19/09 12:16 PM, "Henry Robinson" <> wrote:
> You can. See ZOOKEEPER-368 - at first glance it sounds like observers
> will
> be a good fit for your requirements.
> Do bear in mind that the patch on the jira is only for discussion
> purposes;
> I would not consider it currently fit for production use. I hope to put
> up a
> much better patch this week.
> Henry
> On Sat, Jul 18, 2009 at 7:38 PM, Ted Dunning <>
> wrote:
>> Can you submit updates via an observer?
>> On Sat, Jul 18, 2009 at 6:38 AM, Flavio Junqueira <>
>> wrote:
>>> 2- Observers: you could have one computing center containing an
> ensemble
>>> and observers around the edge just learning committed values.
>> --
>> Ted Dunning, CTO
>> DeepDyve

Reply via email to