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Publication details
Date: 1 November 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: ACM – Association for Computing Machinery
Andrew Baumann, Marcus Peinado, and Galen Hunt

Today's cloud computing infrastructure requires substantial trust. Cloud users rely on both the provider's staff and its globally-distributed software/hardware platform not to expose any of their private data.

We introduce the notion of shielded execution, which protects the confidentiality and integrity of a program and its data from the platform on which it runs (i.e., the cloud operator's OS, VM and firmware). Our prototype, Haven, is the first system to achieve shielded execution of...

Publication details
Date: 6 October 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: USENIX – Advanced Computing Systems Association
Shobana Balakrishnan, Richard Black, Austin Donnelly, Paul England, Adam Glass, Dave Harper, Sergey Legtchenko, Aaron Ogus, Eric Peterson, and Antony Rowstron

A significant fraction of data stored in cloud storage is rarely accessed. This data is referred to as cold data; cost-effective storage for cold data has become a challenge for cloud providers. Pelican is a rack-scale hard disk based storage unit designed as the basic building block for exabyte scale storage for cold data. In Pelican, server, power, cooling and interconnect bandwidth resources are provisioned by design to support cold data workloads; this right-provisioning...

Publication details
Date: 6 October 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: 11th USENIX Symposium on Operating Systems Design and Implementation (OSDI '14)
Chris Hawblitzel, Jon Howell, Jacob R. Lorch, Arjun Narayan, Bryan Parno, Danfeng Zhang, and Brian Zill

An Ironclad App lets a user securely transmit her data to a remote machine with the guarantee that every instruction executed on that machine adheres to a formal abstract specification of the app’s behavior. This does more than eliminate implementation vulnerabilities such as buffer overflows, parsing errors, or data leaks; it tells the user exactly how the app will behave at all times. We provide these guarantees via complete, low-level software verification. We then use cryptography and secure...

Publication details
Date: 6 October 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: USENIX – Advanced Computing Systems Association
Edith Cohen, Avinatan Hassidim, Haim Kaplan, Yishay Mansour, Danny Raz, and Yoav Tzur

Most discovery systems for silent failures work in two phases: a continuous monitoring phase that detects presence of failures through probe packets and a localization phase that pinpoints the faultyelement(s). We focus on the monitoring phase, where the goal is to balance the probing overhead with the cost associated with longer failure detection times.

We formulate a general model for the underlying fundamental subset-test scheduling problem. We unify the treatment of schedulers and cost...

Publication details
Date: 1 October 2014
Type: Technical report
Publisher: Elsevier
Number: MSR-TR-2014-113
Andrew Baumann, Chris Hawblitzel, Kornilios Kourtis, Tim Harris, and Timothy Roscoe

This paper tackles the problem of providing familiar OS abstractions for I/O (such as pipes, network sockets, and a shared file system) to applications on heterogeneous cores including accelerators, co-processors, and offload engines. We aim to isolate the implementation of these facilities from the details of a platform's memory architecture, which is likely to include a combination of cache-coherent shared memory, non-cache-coherent shared memory, and non-shared memory, all in the same...

Publication details
Date: 1 October 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: USENIX – Advanced Computing Systems Association
Publication details
Date: 1 October 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: European Association for Theoretical Computer Science
Rifat Shahriyar, Stephen M. Blackburn, and Kathryn S. McKinley

Garbage collectors are {xact or conservative. An exact collector identifies all references precisely and may move referents and update references, whereas a conservative collector treats one or more of stack, register, and heap references as ambiguous. Ambiguous references constrain collectors in two ways. (1) Since they may be pointers, the collectors must retain referents. (2) Since they may be values, the collectors cannot modify them, pinning their referents.

We explore conservative...

Publication details
Date: 1 October 2014
Type: Article
Dan Alistarh, James Aspnes, Valerie King, and Jared Saia

We consider the problem of consensus in the challenging classic model. In this model, the adversary is adaptive; it can choose which processors crash at any point during the course of the algorithm. Further, communication is via asynchronous message passing: there is no known upper bound on the time to send a message from one processor to another, and all messages and coin flips are seen by the adversary.

We describe a new randomized consensus protocol for this model with expected message...

Publication details
Date: 1 October 2014
Type: Technical report
Number: MSR-TR-2014-15
Sebastian Angel, Hitesh Ballani, Thomas Karagiannis, Greg O'Shea, and Eno Thereska

The lack of performance isolation in multi-tenant datacenters at appliances like middleboxes and storage servers results in volatile application performance. To insulate tenants, we propose giving them the abstraction of a dedicated virtual datacenter (VDC). VDCs encapsulate end-to-end throughput guarantees---specified in a new metric based on virtual request cost---that hold across distributed appliances and the intervening network.

We present Pulsar, a system that offers tenants their own...

Publication details
Date: 1 October 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: USENIX – Advanced Computing Systems Association
Chloe Brown, Christos Efstratiou, Ilias Leontiadis, Daniele Quercia, Cecilia Mascolo, James Scott, and Peter Key

The layouts of the buildings we live in shape our everyday lives. In office environments, building spaces affect employees’ communication, which is crucial for productivity and innovation. However, accurate measurement of how spatial layouts affect interactions is a major challenge and traditional techniques may not give an objective view.

We measure the impact of building spaces on social interactions using wearable sensing devices. We study a single organization that moved between two...

Publication details
Date: 13 September 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: ACM – Association for Computing Machinery
Apurv Bhartia, Mahanth Gowda, Krishna Kant Chintalapudi, Bozidar Radunovic, Ramachandran Ramjee, Deeparnab Chakrabarty, Lili Qiu, and Romit Roy Chowdhury

Due to its superior propagation characteristics, white spaces has the potential to enable license-free wireless wide-area networks (WWAN). However, we show that using standard WiFi in white spaces will not deliver adequate capacity or coverage because of two characteristics unique to WWANs, namely, channel trichotomy which greatly increases number of interferers and sub-noise communication support, crucial for wide coverage.

In this paper, we design, implement and evaluate WiFi-XL - a white space...

Publication details
Date: 1 September 2014
Type: Technical report
Publisher: Microsoft Research
Number: MSR-TR-2014-132
Dan Alistarh, Justin Kopinsky, Jerry Li, and Nir Shavit

High-performance concurrent priority queues are essential for applications such as task scheduling and discrete event simulation. Unfortunately even the best performing implementations do not scale past a number of threads in the single digits. This is because of the sequential bottleneck in accessing the elements at the head of the queue in order to perform a DeleteMin operation. In this paper, we present the SprayList, a scalable priority queue with relaxed ordering semantics. Starting from a...

Publication details
Date: 1 September 2014
Type: Technical report
Number: MSR-TR-2014-16
Yoram Bachrach, Vasilis Syrgkanis, Eva Tardos, and Milan Vojnovic

We introduce a framework for studying the effect of cooperation on the quality of outcomes in utility games. Our framework is a coalitional analog of the smoothness framework of non-cooperative games. Coalitional smoothness implies bounds on the strong price of anarchy, the loss of quality of coalitionally stable outcomes. Our coalitional smoothness framework captures existing results bounding the strong price of anarchy of network design games. Moreover, we give novel strong price of anarchy results...

Publication details
Date: 1 September 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: Springer
Mihai Budiu, Gordon Plotkin, Yuan Yu, and Li Zhang

We present JPath, a JSON database query language, and its syntax, semantics, and implementation. We introduce an indexing data structure for answering JPath queries, and provide a theory unifying query execution on data and index trees using operations on matrices with lattice-valued elements.

Publication details
Date: 1 September 2014
Type: Technical report
Publisher: Microsoft Research
Number: MSR-TR-2014-129
Kyungmin Lee, David Chu, Eduardo Cuervo, Johannes Kopf, Sergey Grizan, Alec Wolman, and Jason Flinn

Gaming is very popular. Cloud gaming – where remote servers perform game execution and rendering on behalf of thin clients that simply send input and display output frames – promises any device the ability to play any game any time. Unfortunately, the reality is that wide-area network latencies are often prohibitive; cellular, Wi-Fi and even wired residential end host round trip times (RTTs) can exceed 100ms, a threshold above which many gamers tend to deem responsiveness unacceptable.

In this...

Publication details
Date: 21 August 2014
Type: Technical report
Publisher: Microsoft Research
Number: MSR-TR-2014-115
Publication details
Date: 20 August 2014
Type: Technical report
Publisher: Microsoft Research
Number: MSR-TR-2014-95
Joseph Bonneau and Stuart Schechter

Challenging the conventional wisdom that users cannot remember cryptographically-strong secrets, we test the hypothesis that users can learn randomly-assigned 56-bit codes (encoded as either 6 words or 12 characters) through spaced repetition. We asked remote research participants to perform a distractor task that required logging into a website 90 times, over up to two weeks, with a password of their choosing. After they entered their chosen password correctly we displayed a short code (4 letters or 2...

Publication details
Date: 20 August 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: USENIX
Hongqiang Liu, Srikanth Kandula, Ratul Mahajan, and Ming Zhang

This is an appendix for paper "Traffic Engineering with Forward Fault Correction" published in SIGCOMM 2014.

Publication details
Date: 15 August 2014
Type: Technical report
Publisher: Microsoft Research
Number: MSR-TR-2014-114
parik, cheng huang, sergey yekhanin, and bob jenkins

Consider a systematic linear code where some (local) parity symbols depend on few prescribed symbols, while other (heavy) parity symbols may depend on all data symbols. Such codes have been studied recently in the context of erasure coding for data storage, where the local parities facilitate fast recovery of any single symbol when it is erased, while the heavy parities provide tolerance to a large number of simultaneous erasures.

A code as above is maximally recoverable, if it corrects all...

Publication details
Date: 1 August 2014
Type: Article
Publisher: IEEE – Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
Gordon Stewart, Mahanth Gowda, Geoffrey Mainland, Bozidar Radunovic, Dimitrios Vytiniotis, and Doug Patterson

Software-defined radios (SDR) have the potential to bring major innovation in wireless networking design. However, their impact so far has been limited due to complex programming tools. Most of the existing tools are either too slow to achieve the full line speeds of contemporary wireless PHYs or are too complex to master. In this demo we present our novel SDR programming environment called Ziria. Ziria consists of a novel programming language and an optimizing compiler. The compiler is able to...

Publication details
Date: 1 August 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: ACM – Association for Computing Machinery
Florian Bourse, Marc Lelarge, and Milan Vojnovic

Balanced edge partition has emerged as a new approach to partition an input graph data for the purpose of scaling out parallel computations, which is of interest for several modern data analytics computation platforms, including platforms for iterative computations, machine learning problems, and graph databases. This new approach stands in a stark contrast to the traditional approach of balanced vertex partition, where for given number of partitions, the problem is to minimize the number of edges cut...

Publication details
Date: 1 August 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: ACM – Association for Computing Machinery
Publication details
Date: 1 August 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: ACM
Robert Grandl, Ganesh Ananthanarayanan, Srikanth Kandula, Sriram Rao, and Aditya Akella
Publication details
Date: 1 August 2014
Type: Inproceeding
Publisher: ACM SIGCOMM
Dan Alistarh, Rati Gelashvili, and Adrian Vladu

We give message-optimal randomized algorithms for two fundamental
distributed assignment tasks, leader election and renaming.
In leader election, all n participants compete for a single item, whereas in renaming the n participants
each compete for one of n distinct items, or names.
The setting is the classic asynchronous message-passing model, where the n
processors communicate over unreliable channels, while timing and t < n / 2 processor crashes are controlled
by a...

Publication details
Date: 1 August 2014
Type: Technical report
Number: MSR-TR-2014-18
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