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Incremental Dynamic Updates with First-class Contexts

Publikationsart Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Originalbeitrag (peer-reviewed)
Publikationsdatum 2013
Autor/in Wernli Erwann, Lungu Mircea, Nierstrasz Oscar,
Projekt Agile Software Assessment
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Originalbeitrag (peer-reviewed)

Zeitschrift Journal of Object Technology
Volume (Issue) 12(3)
Seite(n) 1 - 27
Titel der Proceedings Journal of Object Technology
DOI 10.5381/jot.2013.12.3.a1


Highly available software systems occasionally need to be updated while avoiding downtime. Dynamic software updates reduce down-time, but still require the system to reach a quiescent state in which a global update can be performed. This can be difficult for multi-threaded systems. We present a novel approach to dynamic updates using first-class contexts, called Theseus. First-class contexts make global updates unnecessary: existing threads run to termination in an old context, while new threads start in a new, updated context; consistency between contexts is ensured with the help of bidirectional transformations. We show that for multi-threaded systems with coherent memory, first-class contexts offer a practical and flexible approach to dynamic updates, with acceptable overhead.