Document Details

Title Practical Distributed Computing Approach for Web Enabling Processor-intensive Programs
Archive All Files / Documents / Publications / Newsletter Articles

Providing Internet access to processor-intensive programs, such as ecological models and analytical work flows, can present many challenges. If a conventional web application approach is used for hosting the program (e.g. direct access via CGI or indirect access via ASP/PHP scripting) then processor bottlenecks can lead to a denial of service (DOS) condition on the server if too many requests are received over a short period of time. The longer the application takes to complete tasks the more vulnerable the system is to DOS, particularly as users accustomed to immediate feedback press the "Submit" button multiple times, queuing up even more requests. Employing a multi-tiered architecture with the web and application layers residing on different computers can prevent one over-tasked program from locking up the entire web server, but the application server is still subject to process blocking. A different approach is clearly needed to control web access to processor-intensive programs. An ideal solution would be to use a grid computing infrastructure to schedule and execute long-running analyses; however, grid technology is not yet widely accessible and most existing ecological models and analytical programs are not grid-enabled.

Contributor Wade M. Sheldon

Sheldon, W.M. Jr. 2007. Practical Distributed Computing Approach for Web Enabling Processor-intensive Programs. In: DataBits: An electronic newsletter for Information Managers: Spring 2007. Long Term Ecological Research Network, Albuquerque, NM.

Key Words computing, distributed, LTER-IMC, processor-intensive, programming, web
File Date 2007
Web Link PDF file
view/download PDF file

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under grants OCE-9982133, OCE-0620959, OCE-1237140 and OCE-1832178. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in the material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.