why isolated components
Fri Aug 22 19:05:15 CEST 2003
On Fri, 22 Aug 2003 14:41:02 +0200 (CEST)
Joe Armstrong <> wrote:
> Normally we use OS processes for precisely this reason - processes
> provide "protection domains" and the isolate the effects on an error
> to the process where the error occurred.
> At least that's the idea - no OS that I know of has this property,
> and some OSs are better than others. Windows 98 for example has
> appalling protection between processes - doing something silly in one
> process can easily crash the entire machine. The Linuxes are not much
> better - one process can essentially do a denial of survive attack on
> other processes in the system, by thrashing the disk or something.
> Erlang tries to achieve this, it does somewhat better than mosts OSs
> but still one process could attack another process by sending it
> zillions of messages. Erlang was designed to protect processes from
> accidental errors not malicious attack.
Um... Joe, are you implying that it's *possible* to construct a system
that is impervious to DoS/flooding? Or are you just carping?
> Memory protection is *unnecessary* in a language without pointers
> and decent garbage collector (like Erlang, lisp, prolog, smalltalk,
> ...) but essential for C, C++.
And guess what almost all of those pointerless languages are written in!
At any rate, this is certainly a different analysis than the point of
view where it "doesn't matter" what language some component is written
Basically I guess my point is this - coming out in favour of isolating
processes on this mailing list, is preaching to the converted. Most
Erlang programmers really do understand the benefits. So if you're
asking us what we think, yes of course it's a good idea - and I'm sure
as we need wrappers, we do construct them, on an ad-hoc basis. On the
other hand if you're asking for help in your Crusade to Wrapperize the
Entire Planet, it would help immensely if you could provide a clear
framework for it *first*. So if you're *really* convinced this is the
way to go, how about writing a paper on it? I think that would have
more persuasive power in the long run than some mailing-list ramblings.
Just my $0.02 worth of mailing-list ramblings,
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