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'snowflock' Project Tackles Vm Management


University of Toronto computer science researchers at the school's recent Research In Action event demonstrated a cross-section of the exploratory technology projects being conducted by about 50 faculty and 300 graduate students. For example, SnowFlock is a way to rapidly clone virtual machines for users in cloud-computing environments. The open source software is based on Python scripts and a C library using an older version of Citrix's Xen hypervisor.

Graduate student Philip Patchin says SnowFlock is designed to ease the management burden associated with establishing dozens of virtual machines at once. SnowFlock uses the message passing interface to quickly replicate virtual machines as they are needed and to collapse them once they are no longer needed.

Another group of students is trying to prevent spam over IP telephony (SPIT). The students believe that the SPIT problem will escalate significantly as voice-over-IP (VoIP) becomes less expensive and more users adopt mobile devices. The students are developing a central SPIT detector that cold monitor IP traffic and send information to a central server. When spam is detected, notifications would be sent to the proper gateways to block the spam. Real-time detection is required to prevent SPIT calls, which in turn requires information on patterns and trends in VoIP traffic, which service providers are hesitant to provide due to privacy concerns.

From Computerworld Canada
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