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IBM Journal of Research and Development  
Volume 52, Number 4/5, Page 367 (2008)
Storage Technologies and Systems
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Galapagos: Model-driven discovery of end-to-end application–storage relationships in distributed systems

by K. Magoutis, M. Devarakonda, N. Joukov, N.G. Vogl
Modern business information systems are typically multi-tiered distributed systems comprising Web services, application services, databases, enterprise information systems, file systems, storage controllers, and other storage systems. In such environments, data is stored in different forms at multiple tiers, with each tier associated with some level of data abstraction. An information entity owned by an application generally maps to several data entities, logically associated across tiers and related to the application. Discovery of such relationships in a distributed system is a challenging problem, complicated by the widespread adoption of virtualization technologies and by the traditional tendency to manage each tier as an independent domain. In this paper, we present a system and methodology for model-driven discovery of end-to-end application–data relationships spanning multiple tiers, from the applications to the lowest levels of the storage hierarchy. The key to our methodology involves modeling how data is used and transformed by distributed software components. An important benefit of our system, which we call Galapagos, is the ability to reflect business decisions expressed at the application level to the level of storage.
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