AppScale: Open-source Platform-as-a-Service for Cloud Computing Research and Engineering

Thursday, November 12, 2009 - 4:57pm

The UCSB Institute of Energy Efficiency Presents…

When: WEDNESDAY, November 18, 2009 at 4:00pm
Where: Engineering Science Building (ESB), Room 1001

Computer Science, UCSB


Cloud Computing is a term coined for a recent trend toward service-oriented computing on cluster-based distributed systems. Such systems provide users with a computing paradigm based on service-level agreements with which users gain access to vast, large-scale resources remotely. Cloud computing has experienced rapid uptake in the commercial sector with companies such as Amazon, Google, Microsoft and others providing “elastic” or “utility” products and services that enable resource virtualization, application and system isolation, large-scale, adaptive resource management, and per-application customization via software infrastructures at different levels of abstraction. These systems however are closed and proprietary which limits both our understanding of execution behavior in these settings as well as the degree of control and customization available to application and system developers. Such control and customization is key to providing energy efficiency of data and computing centers.

To address this limitation, to enable the use of such systems on local cluster resources (private and hybrid clouds), and to provide the software infrastructure necessary for the investigation of the next-generation of cloud services, technologies, application domains, etc., the cloud computing group from the UCSB computer science department has developed and released as open-source, the AppScale platform-as-service cloud fabric. AppScale is a software ensemble that both facilitates energy-efficient cloud computing research and implements the Google App Engine (GAE) APIs (emulating the GAE cloud). AppScale operates over virtualized cluster resources, Eucalyptus, and Amazon Web Services (AWS) Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), automatically, and executes GAE applications without modification. AppScale implements a number of different database back-ends, a map-reduce interface, as well as performance and resource monitoring for automatic scaling. In this talk, we overview AppScale, describe its design and implementation, and discuss the various research directions that our group is pursuing using AppScale.

Chandra Krintz is an Associate Professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB). She joined the UCSB faculty in 2001 after receiving her M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). Chandra’s research interests include automatic and adaptive compiler, programming language, virtual runtime, and operating system techniques that improve performance (for high-end systems) and that increase battery life (for mobile, resource-constrained devices). Her recent work focuses on programming language and runtime support for cloud computing. Her group has recently developed and released AppScale — an open-source platform-as-a-service cloud computing system that implements the Google App Engine (GAE) APIs and that facilitates next-generation cloud computing research. Chandra has supervised and mentored over 40 students, has published her work in a wide range of ACM venues including CGO, ECOOP, PACT, PLDI, OOPSLA, ASPLOS, and others, and leads several educational and outreach programs that introduce computer science to young people, particularly those from underrepresented groups. Chandra’s efforts have been recognized with a 2006 NSF CAREER award, the 2008 CRA-W Anita Borg Early Career Award (BECA), and the 2008-9 UCSB Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award.