Research and Advances

The Cedar file system

The Cedar File System (CFS) is a workstation file system that provides access to both a workstation's local disk and to remote file servers via a single hierarchical name space. CFS supports a group of cooperating programmers by allowing them to both manage local naming environments and to share consistent versions of collections of software.


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Research and Advances

Grapevine: an exercise in distributed computing

Grapevine is a multicomputer system on the Xerox research internet. It provides facilities for the delivery of digital messages such as computer mail; for naming people, machines, and services; for authenticating people and machines; and for locating services on the internet. This paper has two goals: to describe the system itself and to serve as a case study of a real application of distributed computing. Part I describes the set of services provided by Grapevine and how its data and function are divided among computers on the internet. Part II presents in more detail selected aspects of Grapevine that illustrate novel facilities or implementation techniques, or that provide insight into the structure of a distributed system. Part III summarizes the current state of the system and the lesson learned from it so far.
Research and Advances

Using encryption for authentication in large networks of computers

Use of encryption to achieve authenticated communication in computer networks is discussed. Example protocols are presented for the establishment of authenticated connections, for the management of authenticated mail, and for signature verification and document integrity guarantee. Both conventional and public-key encryption algorithms are considered as the basis for protocols.
Research and Advances

A hardware architecture for implementing protection rings

Protection of computations and information is an important aspect of a computer utility. In a system which uses segmentation as a memory addressing scheme, protection can be achieved in part by associating concentric rings of decreasing access privilege with a computation. This paper describes hardware processor mechanisms for implementing these rings of protection. The mechanisms allow cross-ring calls and subsequent returns to occur without trapping to the supervisor. Automatic hardware validation of references across ring boundaries is also performed. Thus, a call by a user procedure to a protected subsystem (including the the supervisor) is identical to a call to a companion user procedure. The mechanisms of passing and referencing arguments are the same in both cases as well.

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