Advanced Systems Lab


  • 01 Dec 2015 - New Student-TA mapping uploaded (pdf)
  • 12 Nov 2015 - Templates to be used for writing the report for Milestone 2 are available.
  • 27 Oct 2015 - Tutorial 4 + 5 uploaded (see Course Materials)
  • 13 Oct 2015 - Templates to be used for writing the report for Milestone 1 are available.
  • 06 Oct 2015 - Tutorial 3 and schedule uploaded to Course Materials
  • 29 Sep 2015 - Uploaded the Dryad cluster use instructions.
  • 28 Sep 2015 - Updated Student-TA mapping
  • 28 Sep 2015 - Dryad cluster is ready to use. Please use your nethz credentials to log in.
  • 25 Sep 2015 - Project's SVN repostitory is available at{nethz-username}
  • 25 Sep 2015 - Tutorial examples uploaded (see Course Materials)
  • 21 Sep 2015 - Student-TA mapping uploaded
  • 17 Sep 2015 - Project FAQ added
  • 15 Sep 2015 - Tutorial slides for today's lecture are uploaded (see Course Materials)
  • 15 Sep 2015 - There will be no exercise session in the next 2 weeks (17th & 24th of September)

Course Description

This is a project based course operating on a self-study principle. The course relies on the student’s own initiative, aside from a few tutorials to cover the basis of the project and some basic supporting material, there will be no lectures in the conventional sense. The project as well as the course requires that the student complements the material covered in the tutorials with his/her own study as not all relevant and/or needed material will be covered. The grading will be based on the project; there is no exam.

The main goal of this course is to learn how to evaluate the performance of complex computer and software systems. The course offers an opportunity to bring together the knowledge and expertise acquired in different areas (networking, databases, systems programming, parallel programming) by allowing students to build a multi-tier, distributed information system. The course focuses less on system design and development and more on the evaluation and modeling of the system: understanding the behavior, modeling its performance, code instrumentation, bottleneck detection, performance optimizations, as well as analytical and statistical modeling. The ability to explain the behavior of the system plays a bigger role in the grading than the actual building of the system. However, we expect designs and code that have been thought through – major design mistakes and bad coding practices will affect the grade.

Course Organization

Course Materials

"Art of Computer Systems Performance Analysis" - Raj Jain
John Wiley & Sons Inc; Auflage: 2 Rev ed. (21. September 2015)
"The Art of Computer Systems Performance Analysis" - Raj Jain
Wiley Professional Computing, 1991

From the 1st edition of particular relevance are 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 (Experimental design)
  • Chapters 30, 31, 32, 33, 36 (Queueing theory)

Course Hours

Tutorials: Tuesday, 17:15 – 19:00, CAB G 61.

Office hours: Thursday 17:15 – 19:00, (with the corresponding assistant)

Project: (2 milestones): during the semester


Gustavo Alonso

TAs (Meeting room):