[Gluster-users] Bit-rot functionality

Fred van Zwieten fvzwieten at vxcompany.com
Sun Jul 22 09:14:13 UTC 2012

Hi there,

I am working for a customer right now who is considering Red Hat Storage
Server. One of the sought-after features there is bit-rot detection, and
even better, (semi-automatic) bit-rot restoration.

I know RHSS (nor GlusterFS) has this kind of functionality at the moment
(correct me if i'm wrong!), but I would like to propose a design for this
as a sort of translator that can be stacked on i.e. a (geo) replication

Bit-rot detection can be done through check-summing. It should be a very
low priority job running on one of the bricks. The job walks the complete
file system and, per file, calculates the check-sum, compares it with the
stored check-sum (if present, otherwise it stores the check-sum on all
involved bricks, because it hasn't been checked before).

Bit-rot restoration could be implemented by comparing the check-sums of the
replicas. If there is a mismatch, a more thorough check must be performed,
like running a check-sum on all replica's for that file again, do
a bit-wise compare, or whatever. If the files are still the same,
the check-sum(s) must be replaced. If not, there is
actual bit-rot detected. Now what to do? Which replica holds the clean
version (the thruth?). With an uneven number of replicas one could simply
make it a democratic process and have it fully automated. It should however
save the to be replaced version in a separate store and notify the admin
for verification. Another method would be to just notify the admin and do

The obvious place to store the check-sums would be in the extended
attributes, but one could use a database for it.

I have watch the presentation Red Hat Summit 2012 - A Deep Dive Into Red
Hat Storage<https://access.redhat.com/knowledge/videos/red-hat-summit-2012-deep-dive-red-hat-storage>
Jeff Darcy and I know he (and Red Hat) are very keen on extending the
number of translators with useful functionality. I am no programmer myself,
but would like to get involved in this kind of stuff.

Comments are very welcome!
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