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Redundant Byzantine Fault Tolerance

Overview#

Redundant Byzantine Fault Tolerance (RBFT) is an improvement over the Byzantine Fault Tolerance (BFT)

Byzantine Fault Tolerance state machine replication (BFT) protocols are replication protocols that tolerate arbitrary faults of a fraction of the replicas. Although significant efforts have been recently made, existing BFT protocols do not provide acceptable performance when faults occur. As we show in this paper, this comes from the fact that all existing BFT protocols targeting high throughput use a special replica, called the primary, which indicates to other replicas the order in which requests should be processed. This primary can be smartly malicious and degrade the performance of the system without being detected by correct replicas.

In this paper[1], we propose a new approach, called RBFT for Redundant-BFT: we execute multiple instances of the same BFT protocol, each with a primary replica executing on a different machine. All the instances order the requests, but only the requests ordered by one of the instances, called the master instance, are actually executed. The performance of the different instances is closely monitored, in order to check that the master instance provides adequate performance. If that is not the case, the primary replica of the master instance is considered malicious and replaced. We implemented RBFT and compared its performance to that of other existing robust protocols. Our evaluation shows that RBFT achieves similar performance as the most robust protocols when there is no failure and that, under faults, its maximum performance degradation is about 3%, whereas it is at least equal to 78% for existing protocols.

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