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Displaying posts with tag: protobuf (reset)
A new Protocol Buffers generator for Go

Although the main interface between applications and a Vitess database is through the MySQL protocol, Vitess is a large and complex distributed system, and all the communication between the different services in a Vitess cluster is performed through GRPC. Because of this, all service boundaries and messages between Vitess’ systems are specified using Protocol Buffers. The history of Vitess’ integration with Protocol Buffers is rather involved: We have been using and keeping up to date with the Go Protocol Buffers package since its earliest releases, up until May last year, when Google released a new Go API for Protocol Buffers, which is not backwards compatible with the previous Go package.

Efficient Node.js Buffer usage

When building network libraries for Node.js, as we do at work, one quite quickly comes by Node's Buffer type. A Buffer gives access to a memory region in a quite raw form, allowing to handle raw data and allowing to interpret binary streams. The Buffer interface predates ES6 TypedArrays and has some optimizations.

Two optimisations are notable:

For one the slice() method does not copy data, but returns a view on the underlying data. This makes it quite efficient to work on a window of the data, but when writing one has to be careful. Simple example:

const buffer = Buffer.from("hello"); …
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SHOW CREATE TABLE using table protobuf message

… and really testing the replication code path for CREATE TABLE.

So, for a very long time now, Drizzle has been using a protobuf based structure to describe the structure of tables. The idea was to be able to have engines rather painlessly generate this structure themselves (which several now do). A secondary idea was to use this structure itself for CREATE TABLE (in progress, and embedded_innodb does in fact does only use the table message for its CREATE TABLE codepath). The third idea was to just put the table protobuf message into the replication stream instead of the CREATE TABLE statement (i.e. a SQL string). This means that you could (easily) write a replicator to a DBMS with different SQL syntax, or to a system that doesn’t speak SQL at all.

The final step, to reduce duplicated code …

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ENUM now works properly (in Drizzle)

Over at the Drizzle blog, the recent 2010-06-07 tarball was announced. This tarball release has my fixes for the ENUM type, so that it now works as it should. I was quite amazed that such a small block of code could have so many bugs! One of the most interesting was the documented limit we inherited from MySQL (see the MySQL Docs on ENUM) of a maximum of 65,535 elements for an ENUM column.

This all started out from a quite innocent comment of Jay‘s in a code review for adding support for the ENUM data type to the embedded_innodb engine. It was all pretty innocent… saying that I should use a constant instead of the magic 0×10000 number as a limit …

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Writing A Storage Engine for Drizzle, Part 2: CREATE TABLE

The DDL code paths for Drizzle are increasingly different from MySQL. For example, the embedded_innodb StorageEngine CREATE TABLE code path is completely different than what it would have to be for MySQL. This is because of a number of reasons, the primary one being that Drizzle uses a protobuf message to describe the table format instead of several data structures and a FRM file.

We are pretty close to having the table protobuf message format being final (there’s a few bits left to clean up, but expect them done Real Soon Now (TM)). You can see the definition (which is pretty simple to follow) in drizzled/message/table.proto. Also check out my series of blog posts on the table message

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The Table protobuf message format

If you’ve ever opened up drizzled/message/table.proto in the Drizzle source tree you will have seen what’s in the table message: the structure that describes a database table in Drizzle. Previously I’ve talked about the Table message more generally, giving a fair bit of history of the FRM file and how we’ve replaced it with both the Table protobuf message and an infrastructure inside Drizzle so that Storage Engines own their own metadata.

Yesterday I talked about the …

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The Schema protobuf message: Drizzle’s metadata on a schema

I’ve previously talked about table metadata in Drizzle and how we use the table protobuf message to describe a table (see Drizzle FRM Replacement and others). The model in Drizzle is that the engine is responsible for its metadata. For schemas (you may be thinking ‘database’ but we’re moving to the Schema terminology in Drizzle) we also have a small amount of metadata.

The protobuf message is specified in drizzled/message/schema.proto and is incredibly short. In fact, here it is in its entirety:

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Drizzle FRM replacement: the table proto

Drizzle originally inherited the FRM file from MySQL (which inherited it from UNIREG). The FRM file stores metadata about a table; what columns it has, what type those columns are, what indexes, any default values, comments etc are all stored in the FRM. In the days of MyISAM, this worked relatively well. The row data was stored in table.MYD, indexes on top of it in table.MYI and information about the format of the row was
in table.FRM. Since MyISAM itself wasn’t crash safe, it didn’t really matter if creating/deleting the FRM file along with the table was either.

As more sophisticated engines were introduced (e.g. InnoDB) that had their own data dictionary, there started to be more of a problem. There were now two places storing information about a table: the FRM file and the data dictionary specific to the engine. Even if the data dictionary of the storage engine was crash safe, the FRM file was not plugged into that, so you …

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table_raw_reader – reading the table proto from disk and examining everything

Ever wondered exactly *what* was in a Drizzle Table proto? Well, wonder no more. A while back this little utility called table_raw_reader hit the drizzle codebase. It’s a simple command line utility that takes a .proto file as an argument, reads it off disk and then prints out a text representation using the TextFormat class of the protobuf library.

An example:

stewart@willster:~/drizzle/jay-and-stewart-remove-pack_flag$ ./drizzled/message/table_raw_reader ./tests/var/master-data/test/t1.dfe
name: "t1"
engine {
  name: "InnoDB"
}
field {
  name: "id"
  type: INTEGER
  format: DefaultFormat
  options {
    length: 11
  }
}
field {
  name: "padding"
  type: VARCHAR
  format: DefaultFormat
  options {
    length: 800
  }
  string_options { …
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pack_flag is dead!

(At least in Drizzle)

Brian merged my jay-and-stewart-remove-pack_flag branch and it’s now in trunk. Removing pack_flag was a task for the bell milestone and in true collaborative effort, it took more than one person to unravel its dark mysteries. Hats go off to Jay who bravely ripped more of it out with the aid of excellent Seattle coffee. I finished it off with removing the last remnants and fixing an outstanding bug (and at the same time making us look at the DECIMAL code and shuddering in fear of what it may mean).

With pack_flag gone, we can now do insane things like remove the last bits of TINYINT from the code, as previous to removing pack_flag, if you did that, things …

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