Advanced Systems Lab


  • 18.12.2013 - A new set of sample exercises can be found here (pdf).
  • 04.12.2013 - Uploaded two sets of queueing exercises that will be covered in the exercise sessions.
  • 04.12.2013 - Published a list of exercises from the book that can help in the preparation for the exam.
  • 04.12.2013 - Published the list of chapters from the book relevant for the exam.
  • 10.10.2013 - Published the schedule for the Dryad cluster.
  • 07.10.2013 - Created FAQ page
  • 02.10.2013 - Updated assignment of students to groups, and groups to TAs and rooms can be found in the group assignment document (pdf).

Course Description

The goal of this course is to teach students how to evaluate the performance of complex computer and software systems. Accordingly, the methodology to carry out experiments and measurements is studied.  Furthermore, the modeling of systems with the help of queueing network systems is explained.

The course will have lectures and project work. The first lecture will be on September 17.


Lectures and Exercises


The project consists of the (1) design and development of a message based middleware platform, (2) evaluation and analysis of its performance, and (3) development of an analytical model of the system and an analysis of how the model predictions compare to the actual system behavior.

Grading Scheme:
Project - 40%
    - Milestone 1: 260 points
    - Milestone 2: 140 points


The Art of Computer Systems Performance Analysis, Raj Jain, Wiley Professional Computing, 1991.

Of this textbook, the exam will be based on the following chapters:

Chapters 1, 2, 3 = general introduction, common terminology
Chapters 4, 5, 6 = workloads
Chapter 10 = data presentation
Chapters 12, 13, 14 = probability and statistics
Chapters 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22 = experiment design
Chapters 30, 31, 32, 33, 36 = queueing theory

Useful exercises to prepare for the exam

The following exercises are taken from the textbook and are indicative of some of the questions you can expect to get in the exam. This list is intended only as an example and to help you prepare for the exam by pointing to important topics that you need to know well. Note that this list does not exclude the possibility of having questions about topics that are not mentioned in this list. The format and style of the question might also deviate from the exercises in this list.

2.2 (use the system you build in milestone 1 as example)
12.1, 12.7
13.2, 14.2
30.3, 30.4
31.1, 31.2, 31.3, 31.4 31.7, 31.8
33.1, 33.2, 33.3, 33.5, 33.6, 33.7

Course Hours

Lecture: Tue 17-19h, CAB G 61
Exercise: Thu 17-19h, CAB G 52
Thu 17-19h, CAB G 56
Thu 17-19h, CHN D 42
Thu 17-19h, CHN D 46
Thu 17-19h, CHN D 48


Gustavo Alonso