Transparent Computing








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In the last two decades, with the rapid advances in hardware,software and networks, the computing paradigm has shifted from mainframe computing to the desktop (PC) computing, and then now the pervasive computing (Post-PC), in which devices are diverse and support users to finish their tasks without distraction. Thus, in a user point, we are moving away from a hardware or software-centric view of computing to a more service-oriented perspective, i.e. users simply just accomplish their tasks on their data and don’t care about the machine specifics and management details. Transparent computing, in some sense, is a concrete form of pervasive computing. Conceptually, transparent computing is such a computing paradigm that in which users are not aware of the software, like operating system, supporting tools and applications, but can demand their needed services, which are stored, administrated and managed in centric servers, to accomplish their computing tasks, from any types of devices, for example, personal computer, laptop computer, mobile intelligent device and intelligent appliances.

We have implemented Transcom system based on the concept of Transparent computing, which can support transparent desktop computing. This innovative system’s main features are as follows:

1. The client doesn’t store any OS (Operating System) and application software locally. Instead, it downloads them from the server when powered on and run programs locally according to user’s command. This paradigm alleviates the burden of the server and leverages the client’s local resources.

2. Multi-OS Remote Booting Protocol (MRBP) enables users to download OS kernel and applications from the server through Ethernet.

3. Virtual Swapping and Scheduling algorithms make high-efficient resources sharing possible.

4. The client system supports X86 instruction set and multiple peripheral equipments.

The cost of hardware is as low as $100.

5. Three Chinese patents have been approved related to this system.

6. Products based on this paradigm are being manufactured by three companies including Lenovo, the biggest computer manufacturer in China.

7. The system has wide potential applications including military, education, e-government, enterprise, finance, etc.

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