Understanding Protocols for Byzantine Clock Synchronization
Schneider, Fred B.
All published fault-tolerant clock synchronization protocols are shown to result from refining a single paradigm. This allows the different clock synchronization protocols to be compared and permits presentation of a single correctness analysis that holds for all. The paradigm is based on a reliable time source that periodically causes events; detection of such an event causes a processor to reset its clock. In a distributed system, the reliable time source can be approximated by combining the values of processor clocks using a generalization of a "fault-tolerant average", called a convergence function. The performance of a clock synchronization protocol based on our paradigm can be quantified in terms of the two parameters that characterize the behavior of the convergence function used: accuracy and precision.
computer science; technical report
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