Efficient Transaction Management for XML Documents

Title Efficient Transaction Management for XML Documents
Author(s) T. Grabs, K. Böhm, H.-J. Schek
Type Article
Booktitle Eleventh International Conference on Information and Knowledge Management (ACM CIKM 2002)
McLean, VA, USA
Organization Institute of Information Systems, ETH Zurich
Year 2002


A common approach to storage and retrieval of XML documents is to store them in a database, together with materialized views on their content. The advantage over native XML storage managers seems to be that transactions and concurrency are for free, next to other benefits. But a closer look and preliminary experiments reveal that this results in poor performance of concurrent queries and updates. The reason is that database lock contention hinders parallelism unnecessarily. We therefore investigate concurrency control at the semantic, i.e., XML level and describe a respective transaction manager XMLTM. It features a new locking protocol DGLOCK. It generalizes the protocol for locking on directed acyclic graphs by adding simple predicate locking on the content of elements, e.g., on their text. Instead of using the original XML documents, we propose to take advantage of an abstraction of the XML document collection known as DataGuides. XMLTM allows to run XML processing at the underlying database at low ANSI isolation degrees and to release database locks early without sacrificing correctness in this setting. We have built a complete prototype system that is implemented on top of the XML Extender for IBM DB2. Our evaluation shows that our approach consistently yields performance improvements by an order of magnitude. We stress that our approach can also be implemented within a native XML storage manager, and we expect even better performance.

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