Книга: Distributed operating systems

10.3.1. Goals of DCE RPC

10.3.1. Goals of DCE RPC

The goals of the DCE RPC system are relatively traditional. First and foremost, the RPC system makes it possible for a client to access a remote service by simply calling a local procedure. This interface makes it possible for client (i.e., application) programs to be written in a simple way, familiar to most programmers. It also makes it easy to have large volumes of existing code run in a distributed environment with few, if any, changes.

It is up to the RPC system to hide all the details from the clients, and, to some extent, from the servers as well. To start with, the RPC system can automatically locate the correct server and bind to it, without the client having to be aware that this is occurring. It can also handle the message transport in both directions, fragmenting and reassembling them as needed (e.g., if one of the parameters is a large array). Finally, the RPC system can automatically handle data type conversions between the client and the server, even if they run on different architectures and have a different byte ordering.

As a consequence of the RPC system's ability to hide the details, clients and servers are highly independent of one another. A client can be written in C and a server in FORTRAN, or vice versa. A client and server can run on different hardware platforms and use different operating systems. A variety of network protocols and data representations are also supported, all without any intervention from the client or server.

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