FoundationDB: A Distributed, Unbundled, Transactional Key Value Store (PDF)


FoundationDB is an open source transactional key value store cre- ated more than ten years ago. It is one of the first systems to combine the flexibility and scalability of NoSQL architectures with the power of ACID transactions (a.k.a. NewSQL). FoundationDB adopts an unbundled architecture that decouples an in-memory transaction management system, a distributed storage system, and a built-in distributed configuration system. Each sub-system can be indepen- dently provisioned and configured to achieve the desired scalabil- ity, high-availability and fault tolerance properties. FoundationDB uniquely integrates a deterministic simulation framework, used to test every new feature of the system under a myriad of possible faults. This rigorous testing makes FoundationDB extremely stable and allows developers to introduce and release new features in a rapid cadence. FoundationDB offers a minimal and carefully chosen feature set, which has enabled a range of disparate systems (from semi-relational databases, document and object stores, to graph databases and more) to be built as layers on top. FoundationDB is the underpinning of cloud infrastructure at Apple, Snowflake and other companies, due to its consistency, robustness and availability for storing user data, system metadata and configuration, and other critical information.

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