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Recommend Zen and the Art of Scaling - A Koan and Epigram Approach (Email)

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This is a guest post derived from an email conversation with Russell Sullivan, a computer architect and creator of Alchemy Database, A Hybrid RDBMS/NOSQL-Datastore.

Russell (AKA Jak Sprats) has been pondering, considering, and implementing distributed databases for many years. In a recent email conversation he shared 44 of the lessons he has learned from developing the infrastructure for high performance / highly scalable systems. Some are well known, some are debatable, and some obviously result from a deep experience that is worth learning from:

  1. There are maybe 20 classic bottlenecks (CPU, NIC overload, memory fragmentation, disk seeks, swap, thread deadlock, packet loss, etc.), have a basic understanding of them, because each is a dark tunnel, and you need a specialised flashlight for each.


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