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Distributed Algorithms by Nancy A. Lynch

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Chapter 5 Distributed Consensus with Link Failures

In this and the next two chapters, we study problems of reaching consensus in a distributed network. In such problems, each of the processes in the network begins with an initial value of a particular type and is supposed to eventually output a value of that same type. The outputs are required to be the same—the processes must agree—even though the inputs can be arbitrary. There is generally a validity condition describing the output values that are permitted for each pattern of inputs.

When there are no failures of system components, consensus problems are usually easy to solve, using a simple exchange of messages. To make matters more interesting, the problems are usually considered in settings ...

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