Money Transfer Made Simple

06/18/2020 ∙ by Alex Auvolat, et al. ∙ Irisa Inria 0

It has recently been shown (PODC 2019) that, contrarily to a common belief, money transfer in the presence of faulty (Byzantine) processes does not require strong agreement such as consensus. This article goes one step further: namely, it shows that money transfers do not need to explicitly capture the causality relation that links individual transfers. A simple FIFO order between each pair of processes is sufficient. To this end, the article presents a generic money transfer algorithm that can be instantiated in both the crash failure model and the Byzantine failure model. The genericity dimension lies in the underlying reliable broadcast abstraction which must be suited to the appropriate failure model. Interestingly, whatever the failure model, the money transfer algorithm only requires adding a single sequence number to its messages as control information. Moreover, as a side effect of the proposed algorithm, it follows that money transfer is a weaker problem that the construction of a read/write register in the asynchronous message-passing crash-prone model.

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