From Research to Practice: Experiences Engineering a Production Metadata Database for a Scale Out File System


HP’s StoreAll with Express Query is a scalable commercial file archiving product that offers sophisticated file metadata management and search capabilities. A new REST API enables fast, efficient searching to find all files that meet a given set of metadata criteria and the ability to tag files with custom metadata fields. The product brings together two significant systems: a scale out file system and a metadata database based on LazyBase. In designing and building the combined product, we identified several real-world issues in using a pipelined database system in a distributed environment, and overcame several interesting design challenges that were not contemplated by the original research prototype. This paper highlights our experiences.