Explicit Code Mobility in Java RMI

Alexander Ahern and Nobuko Yoshida


This paper presents a Java-like core language with primitives for object-oriented distribution and explicit code mobility. We apply our formulation to prove the correctness of several optimisations for distributed programs. Our language captures crucial but often hidden aspects of distributed object-oriented programming, including object serialisation, dynamic class downloading and remote method invocation. It is defined in terms of an operational semantics that concisely models the behaviour of distributed programs using machinery from calculi of mobile processes. Type safety is established using invariant properties for distributed runtime con- figurations. We argue that primitives for explicit code mobility offer a programmer fine-grained control of type-safe code distribution, which is crucial for improving the performance and safety of distributed object-oriented applications.