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The Duality of Fault-Tolerant System Structures

Lookup NU author(s): Emeritus Professor Santosh Shrivastava, Professor Brian RandellORCiD



An examination of the structure of fault-tolerant systems incorporating error recovery, and in particular backward error recovery, indicates a partitioning into two broad classes. Two canonical models, each representing a particular class of systems have ben constructed. The first model incorporates objects and actions as the entities for program construction while the second model employs communicating processes and conversations. Applications in the areas such as office information and database systems typically are described and built in terms of the first model while applications in the area of process control are usually described and built in terms of the second model. The paper claims that the two models are duals of each other and presents arguments and examples to substantiate this claim. An interesting conclusion to be drawn from this study is that there is no inherent reason for selecting one model over the other. A pleasing consequence has been the recognition that the techniques which have been developed for one model, turn out to have interesting and hitherto unexplored duals in the other model.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Shrivastava SK, Mancini LV, Randell B

Publication type: Report

Publication status: Published

Series Title: Computing Laboratory Technical Report Series

Year: 1990

Pages: 27

Print publication date: 01/02/1990

Source Publication Date: February 1990

Report Number: 305

Institution: Computing Laboratory, University of Newcastle upon Tyne

Place Published: Newcastle upon Tyne