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Scalability Problems: Hidden Challenges of Growing a System

Scalability problems: the hidden challenges of growing a system.

Problems with scaling

Problems we might face when trying to scale.

When one node has too much control

A centralized system is going to be limited by whatever the main source of control is capable of handling.

When centralization makes scaling hard!

When you’re waiting for a node to text back

Local vs. wide area networks.

Ultimately, a system built around a local-area network will run into problems when its synchronous communication is used in a wide-area network.

When synchronous communication on a (wide-area) network makes scaling hard!


  1. A brief introduction to distributed systems, Maarten van Steen & Andrew S. Tanenbaum
  2. On System Scalability, Charles Weinstock & John Goodenough
  3. Distributed Systems for Fun and Profit, Mikito Takada
  4. An Introduction to Distributed Systems (Lecture Notes), Dr. Tong Lai Yu



Exploring the basics of distributed systems, every alternate Wednesday, for a year.

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