Fast delivery of virtual machines and containers : understanding and optimizing the boot operation

Thuy Linh Nguyen 1, 2
Abstract : The provisioning process of a VirtualMachine (VM) or a container is a succession of three complex stages : (i) scheduling theVM / Container to an appropriate compute node ;(ii) transferring the VM / Container image to that compute node from a repository ; (iii) and finally performing the VM / Container boot process. Depending on the properties of the client’s request and the status of the platform, each of these three phases can impact the total duration of the provisioning operation. While many works focused on optimizing the two first stages, only few works investigated the impact of the boot duration. This comes to us as a surprise as a preliminary study we conducted showed the boot time of a VM / Container can last up to a few minutes in high consolidated scenarios. To understand the major reasons for such overheads, we performed on top of Grid'5000 up to 15k experiments, booting VM / Containerunder different environmental conditions. The results showed that the most influential factor is the I/O operations. To accelerate the boot process, we defend in this thesis, the design of a dedicated mechanism to mitigate the number of generated I/O operations. We demonstrated the relevance of this proposal by discussing a first prototype entitled YOLO (You Only LoadOnce). Thanks to YOLO, the boot duration can be faster 2-13 times for VMs and 2 times for containers. Finally, it is noteworthy to mention that the way YOLO has been designed enables it to be easily applied to other types of virtualization (e.g., Xen) and containerization technologies.
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Thuy Linh Nguyen. Fast delivery of virtual machines and containers : understanding and optimizing the boot operation. Distributed, Parallel, and Cluster Computing [cs.DC]. Ecole nationale supérieure Mines-Télécom Atlantique, 2019. English. ⟨NNT : 2019IMTA0147⟩. ⟨tel-02418752⟩

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