RAMA: An Easy-To-Use, High-Performance Parallel File System

Appeared in Parallel Computing 23(4).


Modem massively parallel file systems provide high bandwidth file access by striping files across arrays of disks attached to a few specialized I/O nodes. However, these file systems are hard to use and difficult to integrate with workstations and tertiary storage. RAMA addresses these problems by providing a high-performance massively parallel file system with a simple interface. RAMA uses hashing to pseudo-randomly distribute data to all of its disks, insuring high bandwidth regardless of access pattern and eliminating bottlenecks in file block accesses. This flexibility does not cause a large loss of performance - RAMA’s simulated performance is within 10-15% of the optimum performance of a similarly-sized striped file system, and is a factor of 4 or more better than a striped file system with poorly laid out data.

Publication date:
July 1997

Ethan L. Miller
Randy Katz

Ultra-Large Scale Storage

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Bibtex entry

  author       = {Ethan L. Miller and Randy Katz},
  title        = {RAMA: An Easy-To-Use, High-Performance Parallel File System},
  journal      = {Parallel Computing},
  pages        = {419-446},
  volume       = {23},
  number       = {4},
  month        = jul,
  year         = {1997},
Last modified 27 May 2009