Skip to Main Content
Peer-to-peer (P2P) technology has triggered a wide range of distributed applications beyond simple file-sharing. Distributed XML databases, distributed computing, server-less web publishing and networked resource/service sharing are only a few to name. Despite of the diversity in applications, these systems share a common problem regarding searching and discovery of information. This commonality stems from the transitory nodes population and volatile information content in the participating nodes. In such dynamic environment, users are not expected to have the exact information about the available objects in the system. Rather queries are based on partial information, which requires the search mechanism to be flexible. On the other hand, to scale with network size the search mechanism is required to be bandwidth efficient. In this survey, we identify the search requirements in large scale distributed systems and investigate the ability of the existing search techniques in satisfying these requirements. Representative search techniques from P2P content sharing, service discovery and P2P databases are considered in this work.
Date of Publication: Second Quarter 2011