JikesRVM

Mobile JikesRVM: A framework to support transparent Java thread migration Today’s complex applications must face the distribution of data and code among different network nodes. Computation in distributed contexts is demanding increasingly powerful languages and execution environments, able to provide programmers with appropriate abstractions and tools. Java is a wide-spread language that allows developers to build complex software, even distributed, but it cannot handle the migration of computations (i.e. threads), due to intrinsic limitations of many traditional JVMs. After analyzing the approaches in the literature, this paper presents our thread migration framework (called Mobile JikesRVM), implemented on top of the IBM Jikes Research Virtual Machine (RVM): exploiting some of the innovative techniques in the JikesRVM, we implemented an extension of its scheduler that allows applications to easily capture the state of a running thread and makes it possible to restore it elsewhere (i.e. on a different hardware architecture or operating system), but still with a version of the framework installed). Our thread serialization mechanism provides support for both proactive and reactive migration, available also for multi-threaded Java applications, and tools to deal with the problems of resource relocation management. With respect to previous approaches, we implemented Mobile JikesRVM without recompiling its JVM (Java Virtual Machine) source code, but simply extending JikesRVM functionalities with a full Java package to be imported when thread migration is needed.

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