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Erasure codes provide space-optimal data redundancy to protect against data loss. A common use is to reliably store data in a distributed system, where erasure-coded data are kept in different nodes to tolerate node failures without losing data. In this paper, we propose a new approach to maintain ensure-encoded data in a distributed system. The approach allows the use of space efficient k-of-n erasure codes where n and k are large and the overhead n-k is small. Concurrent updates and accesses to data are highly optimized: in common cases, they require no locks, no two-phase commits, and no logs of old versions of data. We evaluate our approach using an implementation and simulations for larger systems.
Date of Conference: 28 June-1 July 2005