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Linux 4.0 DSU support is a far cry from supporting Vaughan-Nichols’ hope that “With Linux 4.0, updates to a program we can make statically we can also make dynamically.
When a process makes a system call after the patch is installed, k Graft sets a “new universe” flag on that process.
For example, web and cloud hosting services normally require customers to experience some downtime while the OS infrastructure is upgraded; with rebootless patching, upgrades happen seamlessly.
Or, imagine upgrades to systems hosting in-memory databases: Right now, you have to checkpoint the DB to stable storage, stop the system, upgrade it, restart it, read the data from stable storage, and restart service.
We have developed two systems that take the whole-process approach: Kitsune, for C programs, and Rubah, for Java programs.
Both systems are flexible enough to dynamically apply years’ worth of release-level updates, and they have been used to dynamically update substantial applications such as redis, memcached, snort, H2, and Voldemort.