Erasure coding assignment help
Erasure coding is a method of data protection in which data is broken into fragments, expanded and encoded with redundant data pieces and stored across a set of different locations or storage media. Data protection is a vital part of any organization. It is used to save information that could be lost or stolen and it also helps prevent the loss of important data. Erasure coding is a method of data protection in which data is broken into fragments, expanded and encoded with redundant data pieces and stored across a set of different locations or storage media. It can be used to protect against accidental or malicious deletion
If a drive fails or data becomes corrupted, the data can be reconstructed from the segments stored on the other drives. EC can help increase data redundancy, without the overhead or limitations that come with different implementations of RAID.
How does erasure coding work?
Erasure coding works by splitting a unit of data, such as a file or object, into multiple fragments (data blocks) and then creating additional fragments (parity blocks) that can be used for data recovery. For each parity fragment, the EC algorithm calculates the parity’s value based on the original data fragments. The data and parity fragments are stored across multiple drives to protect against data loss in case a drive fails or data becomes corrupted on one of the drives. If such an event occurs, the parity fragments can be used to rebuild the data unit without experiencing data loss.
For example, a storage system might use a 5+2 encoding configuration to distribute data across multiple physical drives. In this configuration, the EC algorithm breaks each data unit into five data fragments and then adds two parity fragments, which are calculated from the original data. Each fragment is stored on a different physical drive. As a result, the storage system must include at least seven drives.
Two independent disks (50%) are configured together as a single logical disk group. If one of these disks fails, the other can continue to service requests without interruption. The parity stored on these two disks would consume 40% of raw capacity, which is still acceptable considering all other factors involved However, EC is flexible enough to support a wide range of configurations. For example, a 17+3 encoding would split each data unit into 17 segments and then add three parity segments. Although this configuration requires at least 20 physical drives, it can support up to three simultaneous disk failures, while reducing the parity overhead to less than 18%.
Erasure coding makes it possible to protect data without having to fully replicate it because the data can be reconstructed from parity fragments. For instance, in a simple 2+1 configuration, a data unit is split into two segments, with one parity fragment added for protection. If an application tries to retrieve data from either of the data segments and those segments are available, the operation proceeds as normal, even if the parity segment is unavailable.
However, if the first data fragment is available but the second data fragment isn’t, or vice versa, data is read from the first data fragment and the parity fragment. This procedure combines the individual fragments and rebuilds the data by regenerating them together. It is possible to continue operations while using this technique
Erasure coding vs. RAID
Erasure codes, also known as forward error correction codes, were developed more than 50 years ago to help detect and correct errors in data transmissions. The technology has since been adopted to storage to help protect data in the event of drive failure or data corruption. More recently, EC has been gaining popularity for use with large object-based data sets, particularly those in the cloud. As data sets continue to grow and object storage is more widely implemented, EC is becoming an increasingly viable alternative to RAID.
In some cases, erasure coding can be used in place of RAID to address its limitations. Erasure coding can exceed RAID 6 in terms of the number of failed drives that can be tolerated, increasing the level of fault tolerance. In a 10+6 erasure coding configuration, 16 data and polarity segments are spread across 16 drives, making it possible to handle up to six simultaneous drive failures.
Erasure coding, also called RAID or redundant array of independent disks, is a type of data storage that helps protect data by placing several versions of a file on different pieces of storage media. EC lets organizations implement a storage system to meet their specific data protection requirements. In addition, EC can reduce the amount of time it takes to rebuild a disk that has failed, depending on the configuration and number of disks.
Despite these benefits, EC has a serious drawback: its effect on performance. Erasure coding is a processing-intensive operation. The EC algorithm must run against all data written to storage, and the data and parity segments must be written across all participating disks. If a disk fails, rebuild operations put an even greater strain on CPU resources because the data must be reconstructed on the fly. RAID configurations, whether mirroring or striping with parity, have much less of an effect on performance and can often improve it.
Why is erasure coding useful?
Erasure coding is used by cloud storage services such as Amazon’s Simple Storage Service (S3), Microsoft’s Azure and Google’s Cloud to protect their private data stores. Erasure coding has proven especially beneficial for protecting object-based storage systems, as well as distributed systems, making it well suited to cloud storage services. That said, erasure coding has also been making its way into on-premises object storage systems, such as the Dell EMC Elastic Cloud Storage (ECS) object storage platform.
Erasure coding can be useful with large quantities of data and any applications or systems that must tolerate failures, such as disk array systems, data grids, distributed storage applications, object stores and archival storage. Most of today’s use cases revolve around large data sets for which RAID isn’t a practical option. To support EC, the infrastructure must be able to deliver the necessary performance, which is why its predominant use case has been with major cloud services.
Erasure coding is often recommended for storage such as backups or archive — the types of data sets that are fairly static and not write-intensive. That said, erasure coding is finding its way into a variety of systems trying to avoid the high costs of replication. For example, many Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS) implementations now use EC to reduce the overhead associated with storing redundant data across data nodes. Object storage platforms such as Hitachi Content Platform now support erasure coding to protect your data better.
What are the benefits of erasure coding?
Although RAID can still be a useful tool for data protection, EC offers several important benefits that should be considered when planning data storage:
Better resource utilization. Replication techniques such as RAID 1 mirroring use a high percentage of storage capacity for data copies. Erasure coding can significantly reduce storage consumption, while still protecting data. The exact amount of capacity saving will depend on the encoding configuration, but whatever it is, it will still translate to greater storage efficiency and lower storage costs.
Lower risk of data loss. When a RAID array is made up of high-capacity disks, rebuilding a failed drive can take an extremely long time, which increases the risk of data loss should another drive fail before the first one can be rebuilt. Erasure coding can handle many more simultaneous disk failures, depending on the encoding configuration, which means that there is a lower risk of data loss if a drive goes down.
Greater flexibility. RAID tends to be limited to fairly fixed configurations. Although vendors can implement proprietary RAID configurations, most RAID implementations are fairly standard. Erasure coding provides far more flexibility. Organizations can choose the data-to-parity ratio that best fits their specific workloads and storage systems.
Greater durability. Erasure coding enables an organization to configure a storage system that offers a high degree of availability and durability. For example, Amazon S3 is designed for 99.999999999% object durability across multiple Availability Zones. This design allows objects to be transferred from one Availability Zone to another without any interruption in service–something RAID 6 could not do.
When planning their storage strategies, organizations must consider several factors, including how to protect against data loss and provide disaster recovery. Straightforward replication is one approach and RAID is another. Erasure coding is yet one more.
Each strategy comes with advantages and disadvantages. However, with the growing amount of data and continued move to object storage, EC is destined to gain momentum. Erasure coding enables organizations to meet their scalability needs and still protect their data, without incurring the high costs of full-disk capacity. Companies are adapting to current industry changes, but no new technology can be completely perfect. AI writers will likely look very different in five years than they do today..
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