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2005 USENIX Annual Technical Conference
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Technical Sessions: Wednesday, April 13 | Thursday, April 14 | Friday, April 15 | All in one file
FREENIX Track | Invited Talks Track | Guru is in Sessions

Wednesday, April 13, 2005
9:00 a.m.–10:30 a.m. Wednesday
Opening Remarks, Awards, Keynote
Salon E/F
George Dyson Keynote Address
Von Neumann's Universe
Digital Computing at the Institute for Advanced Study, 1945-1958

George Dyson, historian and author of Darwin Among the Machines

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The digital universe consists of two kinds of bits: differences in space and differences in time. Digital computers translate between these two forms of information—structure and sequence—according to definite rules. Exactly 60 years ago, John von Neumann and a small group of nonconformists launched a project to do this at electronic speed. The resulting architecture and coding has descended directly to almost all computers now in use.

Von Neumann succeeded in jump-starting the computer revolution by bringing engineers into the den of the mathematicians, rather than by bringing mathematicians into a den of engineers. The stored-program computer, as delivered by von Neumann, broke the distinction between numbers that mean things and numbers that do things. Our universe would never be the same.

With a bare 5 kilobytes of high-speed storage, von Neumann and his colleagues tackled previously intractable problems ranging from thermonuclear explosions, stellar evolution, and long-range weather forecasting to cellular automata, genetic coding, and the origins of life. Programs were small enough to be completely debugged, but hardware could not be counted on to perform consistently from one kilocycle to the next. Although this situation is now reversed, many of the lessons learned on the von Neumann project remain directly applicable today.

George Dyson is a historian of technology whose interests have ranged from the development (and redevelopment) of the Aleut kayak (Baidarka, 1986) to the evolution of digital computing and telecommunications (Darwin Among the Machines, 1997) and nuclear bomb-propelled space exploration (Project Orion, 2002). Dyson, who lives in Bellingham, Washington, divides his time between building boats and writing books. He is currently compiling an account of the confluence of people, technology, and ideas surrounding John von Neumann's Electronic Computer Project at the Institute for Advanced Study, 1945–1958.
10:30 a.m.–11:00 a.m.   Break  
11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m. Wednesday
Salon E

Session Chair: Mema Roussopoulos, Harvard University

Awarded General Track Best Paper Award!
Debugging Operating Systems with Time-Traveling Virtual Machines

Samuel T. King, George W. Dunlap, and Peter M. Chen, University of Michigan

Using Valgrind to Detect Undefined Value Errors with Bit-Precision
Julian Seward, OpenWorks LLP; Nicholas Nethercote, University of Texas at Austin

Pulse: A Dynamic Deadlock Detection Mechanism Using Speculative Execution
Tong Li, Carla S. Ellis, Alvin R. Lebeck, and Daniel J. Sorin, Duke University

Salon F

Computer Simulations of Thermal Convection and Magnetic Field Generation in Stars and Planets
Gary Glatzmaier, University of California, Santa Cruz

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Global 3D computer models have produced numerical simulations of convection and magnetic field generation in the liquid interiors of terrestrial planets like the Earth and giant planets, like Jupiter. The structure and time-dependence of the large-scale magnetic fields outside the core in Earth simulations resemble the Earth's field to first order and the surface zonal wind profiles in giant planet simulations are beginning to resemble Jupiter's banded zonal wind profile. Examples of such 3D simulations will be presented together with much higher-resolution 2D turbulent simulations, which suggest we are still far from having a robust understanding of the internal dynamics of planets.

Salon G/H/J/K

Software Tools
Session Chair: Greg Watson, Los Alamos National Laboratory

Build Buddy for Fun and Profit
Dan Mills, Novell, Inc.

Scmbug: Policy-based Integration of Software Configuration Management with Bug-tracking
Kristis Makris, Arizona State University; Kyung Dong Ryu, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center

Linux Physical Memory Analysis
Paul Movall, Ward Nelson, and Shaun Wetzstein, IBM

Los Angeles/La Jolla

Mark Burgess, Oslo University College; Alva Couch, Tufts University

Mark Burgess is a professor at Oslo University College and is the author of cfengine. He has been researching the principles of network and system administration for over ten years and is the author of Principles of Network and System Administration (John Wiley & Sons). He is currently working on the next phase of cfengine development.

Alva Couch is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Tufts University. He has been a cfengine user since 1998 and has written several papers studying its properties. He is currently working on a practice manual incorporating a fusion of best tips and tricks, backed by careful theoretical analysis of the effects of practice.

12:30 p.m.–2:00 p.m.   Lunch (on your own)
2:00 p.m.–3:30 p.m. Wednesday
Salon E

Planning & Management
Session Chair: Andrea Arpaci-Dusseau, University of Wisconsin

Surviving Internet Catastrophes
Flavio Junqueira, Ranjita Bhagwan, Alejandro Hevia, Keith Marzullo, and Geoffrey M. Voelker, University of California, San Diego

Making Scheduling "Cool": Temperature-Aware Workload Placement in Data Centers
Justin Moore and Jeff Chase, Duke University; Parthasarathy Ranganathan and Ratnesh Sharma, Hewlett-Packard Labs

CHAMELEON: A Self-Evolving, Fully-Adaptive Resource Arbitrator for Storage Systems
Sandeep Uttamchandani, IBM Almaden Research Center; Li Yin, University of California, Berkeley; Guillermo A. Alvarez and John Palmer, IBM Almaden Research Center; Gul Agha, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Salon F

DDoS Defense in Practice and Theory
Eddie Kohler, University of California, Los Angeles, and Mazu Networks

View presentation slides (PDF)

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Depending on whom you ask, distributed denial of service attacks are either a nuisance, or avoidable today using commercial tools, or so fundamental as to require rearchitecting the Internet. So how serious is the problem, and what can we do? This talk will attempt to answer these questions with a tour of the current DDoS landscape, including commercial and research-grade solutions and experiences from the trenches.

Salon G/H/J/K

Session Chair: Stephen Tweedie, Red Hat

Running Virtualized Native Drivers in User Mode Linux
V. Guffens and G. Bastin, Université Catholique de Louvain

QEMU, a Fast and Portable Dynamic Translator
Fabrice Bellard

Awarded FREENIX Track Best Paper Award!
USB/IP—A Peripheral Bus Extension for Device Sharing over IP Network

Takahiro Hirofuchi, Eiji Kawai, Kazutoshi Fujikawa, and Hideki Sunahara, Nara Institute of Science and Technology

Los Angeles/La Jolla

Clustering and Grid Computing
Greg Bruno, San Diego Supercomputer Center

Greg Bruno is a core developer for Rocks, a high-performance Linux cluster distribution developed at San Diego Supercomputer Center. From Aichi, Japan to Zurich, Switzerland, non-cluster experts have used Rocks to easily deploy their own computational resource. Participants in Greg's Guru session will learn how they can too.

3:30 p.m.–4:00 p.m.   Break
4:00 p.m.–5:30 p.m. Wednesday
Salon E

Improving Filesystems
Session Chair: Mustafa Uysal, Hewlett-Packard Labs

A Transactional Flash File System for Microcontrollers
Eran Gal and Sivan Toledo, Tel-Aviv University

Analysis and Evolution of Journaling File Systems
Vijayan Prabhakaran, Andrea C. Arpaci-Dusseau, and Remzi H. Arpaci-Dusseau, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Comparison-Based File Server Verification
Yuen-Lin Tan, Terrence Wong, John D. Strunk, Gregory R. Ganger, Carnegie Mellon University

Salon F

Massively Multi-player Games and the Systems That Love Them
Mark Wirt,

View presentation slides (PDF)

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Massively multi-player games (MMOs) are persistent-state worlds with thousands to hundreds of thousands of participants. Predictions about the growth of the market vary, but the trend is unambiguous: these games are becoming an increasingly important form of experience and entertainment, and players are flocking to them world-wide.

From their natal inception (so-called "Multi-user Dungeons" running on time-shared computers) to today, MMOs have always presented interesting challenges to programmers, computer scientists, and systems administrators. To service today's player, fully-distributed systems of hundreds of computers must be constructed to manage these games and provide low-latency, complex environments for thousands of simultaneous players. And unlike stateless protocols (such at HTTP), the state of the player, game, and connection must be meticulously maintained. Deploy such a system in an environment where thousands of bright users are actively trying to cheat and/or break the system, and one is immediately presented with a challenging set of problems.

This talk will discuss the challenges of writing and deploying MMOs, some of which are relatively unique to the domain. Some of these challenges include the creation of on-line, functional economies and societies; deploying distributed transactional systems; creating highly synchronized state distribution systems; security; and the management of these systems (including software deployment, version management, updates, etc.)

Salon G/H/J/K

Session Chair: Val Henson, IBM

Trickle: A Userland Bandwidth Shaper for UNIX-like Systems
Marius A. Eriksen, Google, Inc.

A Tool for Automated iptables Firewall Analysis
Robert Marmorstein and Phil Kearns, College of William and Mary

Grave Robbers from Outer Space: Using 9P2000 Under Linux
Eric Van Hensbergen, IBM Austin Research Lab; Ron Minnich, Los Alamos National Labs

5:30 p.m.–6:00 p.m. Wednesday
Salon E

Meet the USENIX Association Board of Directors and staff. Get an update on USENIX activities and events. Tell us how we're doing and give us feedback on the conference.

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Last changed: 29 April 2005 aw