Hardware counter driven on-the-fly request signatures
ACM SIGOPS Operating Systems Review
Today's processors provide a rich source of statistical information on application execution through hardware counters. In this paper, we explore the utilization of these statistics as request signatures in server applications for identifying requests and inferring highlevel request properties (e.g., CPU and I/O resource needs). Our key finding is that effective request signatures may be constructed using a small amount of hardware statistics while the request is still in an early stage of its
... xecution. Such on-the-fly request identification and property inference allow guided operating system adaptation at request granularity (e.g., resource-aware request scheduling and on-the-fly request classification). We address the challenges of selecting hardware counter metrics for signature construction and providing necessary operating system support for per-request statistics management. Our implementation in the Linux 2.6.10 kernel suggests that our approach requires low overhead suitable for runtime deployment. Our on-the-fly request resource consumption inference (averaging 7%, 3%, 20%, and 41% prediction errors for four server workloads, TPC-C, TPC-H, J2EE-based RUBiS, and a trace-driven index search, respectively) is much more accurate than the online running-average based prediction (73-82% errors). Its use for resource-aware request scheduling results in a 15-70% response time reduction for three CPU-bound applications. Its use for on-the-fly request classification and anomaly detection exhibits high accuracy for the TPC-H workload with synthetically generated anomalous requests following a typical SQL-injection attack pattern.