mTags: Augmenting Microkernel Messages with Lightweight Metadata

TitlemTags: Augmenting Microkernel Messages with Lightweight Metadata
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsOliveira, A., A. Saif Ur Rehman, and S. Fischmeister
JournalACM Operating Systems Review

In this work we propose mTags, an efficient mechanism that augments microkernel interprocess messages with lightweight metadata to enable the development of new, system-wide functionality without requiring modification of the application source code. As such it is well suited for systems with a large legacy code base or third-party applications like phone and tablet applications. We explored mTags in a variety of different contexts in local and distributed system scenarios. For example, we detail use cases in areas including messaging-induced deadlocks and mode propagation. To demonstrate that mTags is technically feasible and practical, we implemented it in a commercial microkernel and executed multiple sets of standard benchmarks on two different computing architectures. The results clearly demonstrate that mTags has only negligible overhead and strong potential for many applications.

Refereed DesignationRefereed
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