When to Avoid Delta Propagation

Generally, the larger your objects and the smaller the deltas, the greater the benefits of using delta propagation. Partitioned regions generally benefit more with higher redundancy levels.

By default, delta propagation is enabled in your distributed system.

Delta propagation does not show any significant benefits in some application scenarios. On occasion it results in degradation These are the main factors that can lower the performance benefits of using delta propagation:
  • The added costs of deserializing your objects to apply deltas. Applying a delta requires the entry value to be deserialized. Once this is done, the object is stored back in the cache in deserialized form. This aspect of delta propagation only negatively impacts your system if your objects are not already being deserialized for other reasons, such as for indexing and querying or for listener operations. Once stored in deserialized form, there are reserialization costs for operations that send the object outside of the member, like distribution across gateways, values sent in response to netSearch or client requests, and storage to disk. The more operations that require reserialization, the higher the overhead of deserializing the object. As with all serialization efforts, you can improve performance in serialization and deserialization by providing custom implementations of DataSerializable for your objects.
  • Cloning when applying the delta. Using cloning can affect performance and generates extra garbage. Not using cloning is risky however, as you are modifying cached values in place. Without cloning, make sure you synchronize your entry access to keep your cache from becoming inconsistent.
  • Problems applying the delta that cause the system to go back to the originator for the full entry value. When this happens, the overall operation costs more than sending the full entry value in the first place. This can be additionally aggravated if your delta is sent to a number of recipients, all or most of them request a full value, and the full value send requires the object to be serialized.
  • Disk I/O costs associated with overflow regions. If you use eviction with overflow to disk, on-disk values must be brought into memory in order to apply the delta. This is much more costly than just removing the reference to the disk copy, as you would do with a full value distribution into the cache.