Schema evolution analysis for embedded databases

Shengfeng Wu, Iulian Neamtiu

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

23 Scopus citations


Dynamic software updating research efforts have mostly been focused on updating application code and in-memory state. As more and more applications use embedded databases for storage, dynamic updating solutions will have to support changes to embedded database schemas. The first step towards supporting dynamic updates to embedded database schemas is understanding how these schemas change - so far, schema evolution studies have focused on large, enterprise-class databases. In this paper we propose an approach for automatically extracting embedded schemas from regular applications, e.g., written in C and C++, and automatically computing how schemas change as applications evolve. To showcase our approach, we perform a long-term schema evolution study on four popular open source programs that use embedded databases: Firefox, Monotone, BiblioteQ and Vienna. Our study spans 18 cumulative years of schema evolution and reveals that change patterns and frequency in embedded databases differ from schema changes in enterprise-class databases that formed the object of prior studies. Our platform can be used for performing long-term, large-scale embedded schema evolution studies that are potentially beneficial to dynamic updating and schema evolution researchers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationICDE Workshops 2011 - 2011 IEEE 27th International Conference on Data Engineering Workshops
Number of pages6
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes
Event2011 IEEE 27th International Conference on Data Engineering Workshops, ICDE 2011 - Hannover, Germany
Duration: Apr 11 2011Apr 16 2011

Publication series

NameProceedings - International Conference on Data Engineering
ISSN (Print)1084-4627


Other2011 IEEE 27th International Conference on Data Engineering Workshops, ICDE 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Signal Processing
  • Information Systems


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