What is contention?

  • Any two requests that content for a single limited resource are in contention, this contention can only have one winner. other forced to wait for the winner to complete, as the number of things competing for increases the time to free up resources increases and eventually exceeds acceptable time. As the number of things (requests) that compete for the resource increases the time to free up the resource increases. As the load increases, we will eventually exceed acceptable time limits.

How does contention affect scalability? see: amdahl’s law, gunther’s universal law

As amdahl’s law showed us the effect of contention on a distributed system and demonstrated that when we have contention as we try to add more parallelization or as we try to scale up we start to see diminishing returns, there’s another effect we have to take into account and that is the effect of coherency delay

Both amdahl’s law, gunther’s universal law demonstrate linear scalability is almost unachievable Linear scalability requires total isolation, reactive systems understand the limitation imposed by these laws and accept them rather than avoid them.