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Remote Procedure Call Practical Issues. CS-4513 Distributed Computing Systems

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Remote Procedure CallPractical Issues

CS-4513Distributed Computing Systems

(Slides include materials from Operating System Concepts, 7th ed., by Silbershatz, Galvin, & Gagne, Modern Operating Systems, 2nd ed., by Tanenbaum, and Distributed Systems: Principles & Paradigms, 2nd ed. By Tanenbaum and Van Steen)

Practical Issues of RPC

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  • Message-oriented communication

    • Connections

    • Establishing a connection with a service

    • Reliable communication via TCP

    • Connection-less communication via UDP

  • Remote Procedure Call

    • Procedural interface between client and service

    • IDL & stub compiler (hides communication details)

    • Hiding data representation differences

    • Restrictions on passing objects by reference

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    Practical RPC Systems

    • DCE (Distributed Computing Environment)

      • Open Software Foundation

      • Basis for Microsoft DCOM

      • Tanenbaum & Van Steen, §4.2.4

  • Sun’s ONC (Open Network Computing)

    • Very similar to DCE

    • Widely used

    • rpcgen


  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    Practical RPC Systems (continued)

    • Java RMI (Remote Method Invocation)

      • java.rmi standard package

      • Java-oriented approach — objects and methods

  • CORBA (Common Object Request Broker Architecture)

    • Standard, multi-language, multi-platform middleware

    • Object-oriented

    • Heavyweight

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    Implementation Model for DCE

    Practical Issues of RPC

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    Differences for ONC

    program & version #

    program & version #


    Practical Issues of RPC

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    Validating a Remote Service

    • Purpose

      • Avoid binding to wrong service or wrong version

  • DCE

    • Globally unique ID

      • Generated in template of IDL file

  • Sun ONC

    • Program numbers registered with Sun

    • Version # and procedure # administered locally

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    RPC Binding — Sun ONC

    • Service registers with portmapper on server OS

      • Program # and version #

      • Optional static port #

  • Client

    • Must know host name or IP address

    • clnt_create(host, prog, vers, proto)

      • I.e., RPC to portmapper of host requesting to bind to prog, vers using protocol proto (tcporudp)

    • (Additional functions for authentication, etc.)

    • Invokes remote functions by name

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    Sun ONC (continued)

    • #include <rpc/rpc.h>

      • Header file for client and server

  • rpcgen

    • The stub compiler

      • Compiles interface.x

      • Produces .h files for client and service; also stubs

  • See also

    • rpcinfo

    • RPC Programming Guide

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    Note on XDR(the interface definition language for ONC)

    • Much like C

    • Exceptions

      • string type – maps to char *

      • bool type – maps to bool_t

    Practical Issues of RPC

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    Sun ONC

    • Online tutorial


  • CS-4513 code samples




  • Any other resources you can find

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    Java RMI

    • Based on objects & methods

      • I.e., an object may be located remotely

      • Accessed via methods

      • RMI causes methods to be invoked by RPC

    • Stubs may be local or remote

      • Subject to security policy

    Practical Issues of RPC

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    Java RMI Binding

    • Remote objects must be registered with RMI registry

      • May specify a port

      • Security policy compiled with object

    • Client looks up object via Naming method

      • Specifies host (& port, if needed)

      • Remote stubs delivered with lookup, subject to security policy

    Practical Issues of RPC

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    Java Remote Object details

    • Interface must extend java.RMI.Remote

      • Must be public

      • No new methods introduced by java.RMI.Remote

  • Should also extend

    • java.rmi.server.UnicastRemoteObject

    • Replaces some Object class methods for proper operation in distributed environment

  • Must throw java.rmi.RemoteException

    • May impact definition of existing interfaces

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    Java Remote Object details (continued)

    • Compiling object and stubs

      • Object compiled to bytecodes with javac

      • Stubs compiled with rmic

  • RMI registry must be running before remote object can be launched

    • rmiregistry command (part of JDK distribution)

    • Multiple registries possible on different ports

  • Remote object registers itself

    • java.rmi.Naming interface

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    Java Client details

    • Initialize RMI security manager

      • System.setSecurityManager(…)

      • If no security manager, only local stubs may be loaded

  • Client must find and bind to remote object

    • lookup() method in java.RMI.Naming

    • Location of remote object specified in URL style

      • E.g., “rmi://”

    • Remote stubs loaded by lookup

      • Per security policy

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    Java RMI

    • CS-4513 examples




        • Uses terms “proxy” and “skeleton” for “client-side stub” and “service-side stub” respectively

        • Identifies issues with SYNCHRONIZED remote objects

    • Tanenbaum & Van Steen

      • §10.3, esp. §10.3.4

  • Any other resources you can find

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    Practical Issues of RPC

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    Fundamental Issue

    • With Sun ONC and Java RMI, client must know name or address of server machine in order to bind to remote service

      • IP address or remote name

      • (Sometimes) port number

  • I.e., services are bound to server machines

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    • Location of remote objects not always known

    • Location of remote objects not always constant

    • Pointers/References to remote services are only useful to fixed servers

    • Distributed & replicated services are difficult, at best

    • Location independence is impossible

    Practical Issues of RPC

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    • Location-independent object registry

      • Any object can register itself

  • Location-independent object naming

    • Name of object does not imply location

  • Distributed, replicated registry

    • If any instance goes down, others can serve

  • Distributed, replicated remote objects

    • Any instance may serve in many cases

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    • Some or all of these things are typically provided in the major distributed object standards

      • DCOM, CORBA, etc.

  • “Global” registry is central component

  • Practical Issues of RPC

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    But …

    • None really get it right for broad spectrum of distributed systems & applications

    • E.g., CORBA

      • Very heavyweight (too cumbersome)

      • Object can live in only one location

        • Inefficient for very commonly accessed objects

        • Distributed, replicated object difficult to support

    Practical Issues of RPC

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    Reading Assignment

    • “Grapevine: An Exercise in Distributed Computing,” Communications of the ACM, April 1982

      • PDF link

    Practical Issues of RPC

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    Practical Issues of RPC