Parallel and Distributed Systems Group

Computer Science Department of Telecom SudParis

The Demikernel Datapath OS Architecture for Microsecond-scale Datacenter Systems

Reading group: Yohan Pipereau presented "The Demikernel Datapath OS Architecture for Microsecond-scale Datacenter Systems" (SOSP'21) at 4A312 the 9/9/2022 at 11h00.


Datacenter systems and I/O devices now run at single-digit microsecond latencies, requiring ns-scale operating systems. Traditional kernel-based operating systems impose an unaffordable overhead, so recent kernel-bypass OSes [73] and libraries [23] eliminate the OS kernel from the I/O datapath. However, none of these systems offer a general-purpose datapath OS replacement that meet the needs of μs-scale systems.

This paper proposes Demikernel, a flexible datapath OS and architecture designed for heterogenous kernel-bypass devices and μs-scale datacenter systems. We build two prototype Demikernel OSes and show that minimal effort is needed to port existing μs-scale systems. Once ported, Demikernel lets applications run across heterogenous kernel-bypass devices with ns-scale overheads and no code changes.