Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Facebook's FlashCache: a Linux ExpressCache?

In a previous post I was trying to get the best of my Samsung Series 5 Ultrabook, with Linux. One of the points that I intended to research is how to implement the ExpressCache in a Linux environment.

ExpressCache, in Condusiv's own words, is an innovative technology developed by Condusiv Technologies to improve system speeds by incorporating SSD technology advances into Windows 7 systems.

In plain English, ExpressCache is a way to utilize the SSD storage as a caching layer to speed up reads and writes during applications runtime, among other things.

Now, in my search for how to implement such technology in a Linux environment, I came upon what I might call a shocking discovery, namely FlashCache. FlashCache is a, shockingly, facebook open source project that introduces the same concept and which was released on April 27, 2010. It seems that facebook, in sake of speeding up their data extraction, for obvious reasons, have developed this technique. It is open source, and it works greatly with Linux (actually, I believe it was developed for Unix/Linux).

Now, Implementing the flashcache is not hard. There are a couple of tutorials online, some of them are specifically for Ubuntu, and a nice Wiki on the Arch Linux Wiki page, but since I crave learning I'm planning on understanding the Block Cache on Linux, first, then implement that on my installation. I'll be fully documenting and blogging about it at a later time.

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