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USENIX Technical Program - Abstract - Internet Technologies & Systems 99

Providing Dynamic and Customizable Caching Policies

J. Fritz Barnes and Raju Pandey, University of California at Davis


Web caching has emerged as one solution for improving client latency on the web. Cache effectiveness depends on the policies used to route requests to other caches and servers, to maintain up-to-date web objects and to remove objects from the cache. Traditional caches apply one set of policies, which determines the efficiency as well as the effectiveness of the caches. This set of policies often does not exploit the diversity inherent in different web objects, caches and clients. Policies that do exploit this diversity result in convoluted caching policies that attempt to combine multiple policies and guess at the unknown characteristics of web objects, caches and clients.

In this paper, we present an extensible caching infrastructure in which cache administrators, servers, and end users can customize how web objects are cached, replaced, and kept consistent. The infrastructure includes a domain-specific language, CacheL, for defining customizable caching policies that can be changed dynamically. Analysis of our prototype, PoliSquid, shows the benefits of the infrastructure for variable coherency policies, localized removal policies, and early removal of objects from servers.

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Last changed: 25 Feb 2002 ml
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