"I have a mind like a steel... uh... thingy." Patrick Logan's weblog.

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Thursday, July 05, 2007

The Multicast Internets

Ian Cartwright has a post on rest, in particular http, not being the answer to all your problems. He touches on some alternatives (no, not WS-*!), but another post from April is interesting along the same lines: he wonders about reviving multicast on the internet, not just on a subnet.

Which led to an interesting comment by Nat Pryce, that there are various internet multicast protocols, but anyway here's the interesting bits with some links included...

Also, it turns out that it is easier to implement internet scale publish/subscribe event dissemination using an overlay network of reliable unicast links between routers and only use link-level multicast for the last hop, if at all. Have a look at Elvin, Avis and Siena, for example.
Update: Good comments, and Nat provided the Avis link.


Nat Pryce said...

Avis is an open-source implementation of the Elvin message router. Unfortunately it does not yet implement all of the Elvin protocol. In particular, quenching is not supported yet.


Chris said...

I did a bunch of work a while back with Elvin, before Mantara bought them and "took it private." I don't know what happened, but it was a great system, simple to use, and could take a real beating. Last I knew, they'd decided to focus exclusively on the stock-market world. Unfortunate.

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Portland, Oregon, United States
I'm usually writing from my favorite location on the planet, the pacific northwest of the u.s. I write for myself only and unless otherwise specified my posts here should not be taken as representing an official position of my employer. Contact me at my gee mail account, username patrickdlogan.