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README.md

A collection of persistent queue implementations for Tarantool 1.6 and 1.7

#Table of contents

Queue types

fifo - a simple queue

Features:

  • If there is only one consumer, tasks are scheduled in strict FIFO order.
  • If there are many concurrent consumers, FIFO order is preserved on average, but is less strict: concurrent consumers may complete tasks in a different order.

The following options can be specified when creating a fifo queue:

  • temporary - boolean - if true, the contents do not persist on disk (the queue is in-memory only)
  • if_not_exists - boolean - if true, no error will be returned if the tube already exists
  • on_task_change - function name - a callback to be executed on every operation; the expected function syntax is function(task, stats_data), where stats_data is the operation type, and task is normalized task data. NOTE: It's better to use :on_task_change() function.

fifo queue does not support:

  • task priorities (pri)
  • task time to live (ttl)
  • task time to execute (ttr)
  • delayed execution (delay)

Example:

-- add a log record on task completion
local function otc_cb(task, stats_data)
    if stats_data == 'delete' then
        log.info("task %s is done", task[1])
    end
end

queue.create_tube('tube_name', 'fifo', {temporary = true, on_task_change = otc_cb})
queue.tube.tube_name:put('my_task_data_1')
queue.tube.tube_name:put('my_task_data_2')

In the example above, the otc_cb function will be called 2 times, on each task completion. Values for the callback arguments will be taken from the queue.

fifottl - a simple priority queue with support for task time to live

The following options can be specified when creating a fifottl queue:

  • temporary - boolean - if true, the contents of the queue do not persist on disk
  • if_not_exists - boolean - if true, no error will be returned if the tube already exists
  • on_task_change - function name - a callback to be executed on every operation

The following options can be specified when putting a task in a fifottl queue:

  • pri - task priority (0 is the highest priority and is the default)
  • ttl - numeric - time to live for a task put into the queue, in seconds. if ttl is not specified, it is set to infinity (if a task exists in a queue for longer than ttl seconds, it is removed)
  • ttr - numeric - time allotted to the worker to work on a task, in seconds; if ttr is not specified, it is set to the same as ttl (if a task is being worked on for more than ttr seconds, its status is changed to 'ready' so another worker may take it)
  • delay - time to wait before starting to execute the task, in seconds

Example:

queue.create_tube('tube_name', 'fifottl', {temporary = true})
queue.tube.tube_name:put('my_task_data', { ttl = 60.1, delay = 80 })

In the example above, the task has 60.1 seconds to live, but the start of execution is delayed for 80 seconds. Thus the task actually will exist for up to (60.1 + 80) 140.1 seconds.

A smaller priority value indicates a higher priority, so a task with priority 1 will be executed after a task with priority 0, if all other options are equal.

utube - a queue with sub-queues inside

The main idea of this queue backend is the same as in a fifo queue: the tasks are executed in FIFO order. However, tasks may be grouped into sub-queues.

The following options can be specified when creating a utube queue:

  • temporary - boolean - if true, the contents of the queue do not persist on disk
  • if_not_exists - boolean - if true, no error will be returned if the tube already exists
  • on_task_change - function name - a callback to be executed on every operation

The following options can be specified when putting a task in a utube queue:

  • utube - the name of the sub-queue. Sub-queues split the task stream according to the sub-queue name: it is not possible to take two tasks out of a sub-queue concurrently, each sub-queue is executed in strict FIFO order, one task at a time.

utube queue does not support:

  • task priorities (pri)
  • task time to live (ttl)
  • task time to execute (ttr)
  • delayed execution (delay)

Example:

Imagine a web crawler, fetching pages from the Internet and finding URLs to fetch more pages. The web crawler is based on a queue, and each task in the queue refers to a URL which the web crawler must download and process. If the web crawler is split into many worker processes, then the same URL may show up in the queue many times, because a single URL may be referred to by many linking pages. And the worker processes, working in parallel, can cause a denial-of-service on the site of the URL. As a result, the web crawler can end up in the web server's user-agent ban list -- not a desirable outcome.

If the URL's domain name is used as a sub-queue name, this problem can be solved: all the URLs with the same domain name can be fetched and processed in strict FIFO order.

utubettl - extension of utube to support ttl

This queue type is effectively a combination of fifottl and utube.

The following options can be specified when creating a utubettl queue:

  • temporary - boolean - if true, the contents of the queue do not persist on disk
  • if_not_exists - boolean - if true, no error will be returned if the tube already exists
  • on_task_change - function name - a callback to be executed on every operation

The following options can be specified when putting a task in a utubettl queue:

  • utube - the name of the sub-queue
  • ttl - numeric - time to live for a task put into the queue, in seconds. if ttl is not specified, it is set to infinity (if a task exists in a queue for longer than ttl seconds, it is removed)
  • ttr - numeric - time allotted to the worker to work on a task, in seconds; if ttr is not specified, it is set to the same as ttl (if a task is being worked on for more than ttr seconds, its status is changed to 'ready' so another worker may take it)
  • delay - time to wait before starting to execute the task, in seconds

The underlying spaces

The queue system consists of fibers, IPC channels, functions, and spaces. Here is how queues map to spaces in a Tarantool database.

The _queue space contains tuples for each queue and its properties. This space is created automatically when the queue system is initialized for the first time (for example, by "require 'queue'"), and is re-used on later occasions.

Fields of the _queue space

  1. tube - the name of the queue
  2. tube_id - queue ID, numeric
  3. space - the name of a space associated with the queue, which contains one tuple for each queue task
  4. type - the queue type ('fifo', 'fifottl', 'utube', 'utubettl')
  5. opts - additional options supplied when creating the queue, for example 'ttl'

The _queue_consumers temporary space contains tuples for each job which is working on a queue. Consumers may be simply waiting for tasks to be put in the queues.

Fields of the _queue_consumers space

  1. session - session (connection) ID of the client
  2. fid - client fiber ID
  3. tube_id - queue ID, referring to the tube_id field in the _queue space; the client waits for tasks in this queue
  4. timeout - the client wait timeout
  5. time - the time when the client took a task

The _queue_taken temporary space contains tuples for each job which is processing a task in the queue.

Fields of the _queue_taken space

  1. session - session (connection) ID of the client, referring to the session_id field of the _queue_consumers space
  2. tube_id - queue ID, to which the task belongs
  3. task_id - task ID (of the task being taken)
  4. time - the time when the client began to execute the task

Also, there is a space which is associated with each queue, which is named in the space field of the _queue space. The associated space contains one tuple for each task.

Fields of the space associated with each queue

  1. task_id - numeric - see below
  2. task_state - 'r' for ready, 't' for taken, etc. - see below
  3. task_data - the contents of the task, usually a long string x. (additional fields if the queue type has options for ttl, priority, or delay)

The task_id value is assigned to a task when it's inserted into a queue. Currently, task_id values are simple integers for fifo and fifottl queues.

The task_state field takes one of the following values (different queue types support different sets of task_state values, so this is a superset):

  • 'r' - the task is ready for execution (the first consumer executing a take request will get it)
  • 't' - the task has been taken by a consumer
  • '-' - the task has been executed (a task is removed from the queue after it has been executed, so this value will rarely be seen)
  • '!' - the task is buried (disabled temporarily until further changes)
  • '~' - the task is delayed for some time

Installing

There are three alternative ways of installation.

  • Get the tarantool_queue package from a repository. For example, on Ubuntu, say: sudo apt-get install tarantool-queue
  • Take the Lua rock from rocks.tarantool.org.
  • Take the source files from https://github.com/tarantool/queue, then build and install.

Using the queue module

queue = require 'queue'

The request "require 'queue'" causes automatic creation of the _queue space, unless it already exists. The same request also sets the necessary space triggers and other objects associated with queues.

Creating a new queue

queue.create_tube(queue name, queue type [, {options} ])

Creates a queue.

The queue name must be alphanumeric and be up to 32 characters long.

The queue type must be 'fifo', 'fifottl', 'utube', or 'utubettl'.

The options, if specified, must be one or more of the options described above (temporary and/or ttl and/or ttr and/or pri, depending on the queue type). The ttr and ttl options can be regarded as defaults, which may be overridden when a task is put in a queue.

Effect: a tuple is added in the _queue space, and a new associated space is created.

Example: queue.create_tube('list_of_sites', 'fifo', {temporary = true})

Putting a task in a queue

To insert a new task into a queue, use:

queue.tube.tube_name:put(task_data [, {options} ])

The tube_name must be the name which was specified by queue.create_tube.

The task_data contents are the user-defined description of the task, usually a long string.

The options, if specified, must be one or more of the options described above (ttl and/or ttr and/or pri and/or delay and/or utube, depending on the queue type). If an option is not specified, the default is what was specified during queue.create_tube, and if that was not specified, then the default is what was described above for the queue type. Note: if the delay option is specified, the delay time is added to the ttl time.

Effect: a new tuple is created in the queue's associated space, with task_id = a number which is equal to the largest task_id so far, plus 1 task_state = 'r' (ready) task_data = whatever the user put in the task_data parameter

Returns: the value of the new tuple in the queue's associated space, also called the "created task".

Example: queue.tube.list_of_sites:put('Your task is to do something', {pri=2})

After a task has been put in a queue, one of these things may happen: it may be removed from the queue because its ttl (time to live) expires, or it may be acted on by a worker (usually with a take request).

Taking a task from the queue ("consuming")

queue.tube.tube_name:take([timeout])

Take a queue task.

The take request searches for a task in the queue or sub-queue (that is, a tuple in the queue's associated space) which has task_state = 'r' (ready), and task_id = a value lower than any other tuple which also has task_state = 'r'.

If there is no such task, and timeout was specified, then the job waits until a task becomes ready or the timeout expires.

Effect: the value of task_state changes to 't' (taken). The take request tells the system that the task is being worked on. It should be followed by an ack request when the work is finished. Additional effect: a tuple is added to the _queue_taken space.

Returns: the value of the taken tuple, or nil if none was found. The value of the first field in the tuple (task_id) is important for further requests. The value of the second field in the tuple (task_data) is important as it presumably contains user-defined instructions for what to do with the task.

Example: t_value = queue.tube.list_of_sites:take(15)

Increasing TTR and/or TTL for tasks

queue.tube.tube_name:touch(task_id, increment)

Increase ttr of running task. Useful if you can't predict in advance time needed to work on task.

Effect: the value of ttr and ttl increased by increment seconds. If queue does not support ttr, error will be thrown. If increment is lower than zero, error will be thrown. If increment is zero or nil effect is noop. If current ttr of task is 500 years or greater then operation is noop.

Example: t_value = queue.tube.list_of_sites:touch(15, 60)

Acknowledging the completion of a task

queue.tube.tube_name:ack(task_id)

The worker which has used 'take' to take the task should use 'ack' to signal that the task has been completed. The current task_state of the tuple should be 't' (taken), and the worker issuing the ack request must have the same ID as the worker which issued the take request.

Effect: the value of task_state changes to '~' (acknowledged). Shortly after this, it may be removed from the queue automatically.

If 'take' occurs but is not soon followed by 'ack' -- that is, if ttr (time to run) expires, or if the worker disconnects -- the effect is: task_state is changed from 't' (taken) back to 'r' (ready). This effect is the same as what would happen with a release request.

Example: queue.tube.list_of_sites:ack(15)

Releasing a task

queue.tube.tube_name:release(task_id, opts)

Put the task back in the queue. A worker which has used 'take' to take a task, but cannot complete it, may make a release request instead of an ack request. Effectively, 'ack' implies successful completion of a taken task, and 'release' implies unsuccessful completion of a taken task.

Effect: the value of task_state changes to 'r' (ready). After this, another worker may take it. This is an example of a situation where, due to user intervention, a task may not be successfully completed in strict FIFO order.

Example: queue.tube.list_of_sites:release(15, {delay=10})

Note: in the above example, the delay option means "the task cannot be executed again for 10 seconds".

Peeking at a task

queue.tube.tube_name:peek(task_id)

Look at a task without changing its state.

Effect: this is the same as getting a tuple from the space associated with the queue: box.space.tube_name:select(task_id).

Returns: the tuple of the task.

Example: queue.tube.list_of_sites:peek(15)

Burying a task

queue.tube.tube_name:bury(task_id)

If it becomes clear that a task cannot be executed in the current circumstances, you can "bury" the task -- that is, disable it until the circumstances change.

Effect: the value of task_state changes to '!' (buried). Since '!' is not equal to 'r' (ready), the task can no longer be taken. Since '!' is not equal to '~' (complete), the task will not be deleted. The only thing that can affect a buried task is a kick request.

Returns: the tuple value.

Example: queue.tube.list_of_sites:bury(15)

Kicking a number of tasks

queue.tube.tube_name:kick(count)

Reverse the effect of a bury request on one or more tasks.

Effect: the value of task_state changes from '!' (buried) to 'r' (ready), for one or more tasks.

Returns: number of tasks actually kicked.

Example: queue.tube.list_of_sites:kick(99) (this will change up to 99 buried tasks)

Deleting a task

queue.tube.tube_name:delete(task_id)

Delete the task identified by task_id.

Effect: the current state of task_state is not checked. The task is removed from the queue.

Example: queue.tube.list_of_sites:delete(15)

Dropping a queue

queue.tube.tube_name:drop()

Reverse the effect of a create request.

Effect: remove the tuple from the _queue space, and drop the space associated with the queue.

Getting statistics

queue.statistics( [queue name] )

Show the number of tasks in a queue broken down by task_state, and the number of requests broken down by the type of request. If the queue name is not specified, show these numbers for all queues. Statistics are temporary, they are reset whenever the Tarantool server restarts.

Example:

queue.tube.tube_name:on_task_change(callback)

Replace old on_task_change callback or set the new one. Previously set callback is returned.

Get statistics for given tube:

queue.statistics('list_of_sites')
---
- tasks:
     taken: 0
     buried: 0
     ready: 0
     done: 2
     delayed: 0
     total: 0
   calls:
     ack: 1
     take: 1
     kick: 1
     bury: 1
     put: 2
     delete: 1
...

Implementation details

The implementation is based on the common functions for all queues:

  1. controlling the consumers (watching connection state/wakeup)
  2. similarities of the API
  3. spaces to support each tube
  4. etc

Each new queue has a "driver" to support it.

Queue drivers

Mandatory requirements

  1. The driver works with tuples. The only thing the driver needs to know about the tuples is their first two fields: id and state.
  2. Whenever the driver notices that a task state has changed, it must notify the framework about the change.
  3. The driver must not throw exceptions, unless the driver API is misused. I.e. for normal operation, even errors during normal operation, there should be no exceptions.

Driver API

Driver class must implement the following API:

  1. new (constructs an instance of a driver), takes:
  • the space object, in which the driver must store its tasks
  • a callback to notify the main queue framework on a task state change (on_task_change)
  • options of the queue (a Lua table)
  1. create_space - creates the supporting space. The arguments are:
  • space name
  • space options

To sum up, when the user creates a new queue, the queue framework passes the request to the driver, asking it to create a space to support this queue, and then creates a driver instance, passing to it the created space object.

The same call sequence is used when the queue is "restarted" after Tarantool server restart.

The driver instance returned by the new method must provide the following API:

  • tube:normalize_task(task) - converts the task tuple to the object which is passed on to the user (removes the administrative fields)
  • tube:put(data[, opts]) - puts a task into the queue. Returns a normalized task which represents a tuple in the space
  • tube:take() - sets the task state to 'in progress' and returns the task. If there are no 'ready' tasks in the queue, returns nil.
  • tube:delete(task_id) - deletes a task from the queue
  • tube:release(task_id, opts) - puts a task back to the queue (in the 'ready' state)
  • tube:bury(task_id) - buries a task
  • tube:kick(count) - digs out count tasks
  • tube:peek(task_id) - return the task state by ID
  • tube:truncate() - delete all tasks from the tube. Note that tube:truncate must be called only by the user who created this tube (has space ownership) OR under a setuid function. Read more about setuid functions here.