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Proceedings Paper

A lightweight fault-tolerant middleware for a Subaru Telescope second generation observation control system
Author(s): Eric Jeschke; Bruce Bon; Takeshi Inagaki; Sam Streeper
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Paper Abstract

Subaru Telescope is developing a second-generation Observation Control System that specifically addresses some of the deficiencies of the current Subaru OCS. Two areas of concern are complexity and failure handling. The current system has over 1000 dedicated OCS processes spread across a dozen hosts and provides nothing in the way of automated failover. Furthermore, manual failover is so fraught with difficulty that it is rarely attempted. Our Generation 2 OCS is written almost entirely in Python and builds upon a Subaru-developed middleware based on the XML-RPC protocol. This framework offers the following benefits: - has very few dependences outside of standard Python - provides a nearly seamless remote proxy object-oriented interface - provides optional user/password authentication and/or SSL encryption - is extremely simple to use from client applications - is connectionless, and assists transparent failover of communications and services on a cluster of hosts - has reasonable performance for a wide range of needs - allows multiple language bindings - for dynamic languages, requires no interface stub files The "back end" (service side) of the OCS is nearing completion, and has already been used successfully during two separate OCS engineering runs. It is comprised of only a couple dozen processes, and provides automated failover capabilities on a rack of commodity x86 Linux servers. We provide an overview of the middleware design and its failover capabilities. Some data on the performance of communications using the middleware protocol is included.

Paper Details

Date Published: 14 July 2008
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 7019, Advanced Software and Control for Astronomy II, 70190U (14 July 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.788052
Show Author Affiliations
Eric Jeschke, Subaru Telescope, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (United States)
Bruce Bon, Subaru Telescope, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (United States)
Takeshi Inagaki, Subaru Telescope, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (United States)
Sam Streeper, Subaru Telescope, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7019:
Advanced Software and Control for Astronomy II
Alan Bridger; Nicole M. Radziwill, Editor(s)

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