Google Research

CloudCluster: Unearthing the Functional Structure of a Cloud Service

  • Christophe Diot
  • Jehangir Amjad
  • Ramesh Govindan
  • Ramesh Govindan
  • Sourav Panda
  • weiwu pang
NSDI 2022, USENIX (2022)

Abstract

In their quest to provide customers with good tools to manage cloud services, cloud providers are hampered by having very little visibility into cloud service functionality; a provider often only knows where VMs of a service are placed, how the virtual networks are configured, how VMs are provisioned, and how VMs communicate with each other. In this paper, we show that, using the VM-to-VM traffic matrix, we can unearth the functional structure of a cloud service and use it to aid cloud service management. Leveraging the observation that cloud services use well-known design patterns for scaling (e.g., replication, communication locality), we show that clustering the VM-to-VM traffic matrix yields the functional structure of the cloud service. Our clustering algorithm, CloudCluster, must overcome challenges imposed by scale (cloud services contain tens of thousands of VMs) and must be robust to orders-of-magnitude variability in traffic volume and measurement noise. To do this, CloudCluster uses a novel combination of feature scaling, dimensionality reduction, and hierarchical clustering to achieve clustering with over 92% homogeneity and completeness. We show that CloudCluster can be used to explore opportunities to reduce cost for customers, identify anomalous traffic and potential misconfigurations.

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