OpSets: Sequential Specifications for Replicated Datatypes

Martin Kleppmann 📧, Victor B. F. Gomes 📧, Dominic P. Mulligan 📧 and Alastair R. Beresford 📧

May 10, 2018

Abstract

We introduce OpSets, an executable framework for specifying and reasoning about the semantics of replicated datatypes that provide eventual consistency in a distributed system, and for mechanically verifying algorithms that implement these datatypes. Our approach is simple but expressive, allowing us to succinctly specify a variety of abstract datatypes, including maps, sets, lists, text, graphs, trees, and registers. Our datatypes are also composable, enabling the construction of complex data structures. To demonstrate the utility of OpSets for analysing replication algorithms, we highlight an important correctness property for collaborative text editing that has traditionally been overlooked; algorithms that do not satisfy this property can exhibit awkward interleaving of text. We use OpSets to specify this correctness property and prove that although one existing replication algorithm satisfies this property, several other published algorithms do not.
BSD License

Topics

Theories of OpSets