Distributed hash tables

A Distributed Hash Table (DHT) uses a key/value pair to locate resources in a network. This mapping function is spread across peers making it distributed. This architecture allows P2P networks to scale easily to a large number of nodes and to handle peers joining and leaving a network randomly. A DHT is the basis to support core P2P services. Many applications use DHT, including BitTorrent, Freenet, and YaCy.

The following figure illustrates mapping a key to a value. The key is frequently a string containing the identity of a resource, such as the name of a book; and the value is a number generated to represent the resource. The number can be used to locate the resource in a network and can correspond to the identifier of ...

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