Version 10.0.0
Rollback to stable (Architecture Guide)
Data StructuresSource Location

Rollback to stable is an operation that retains only the modifications that are stable according to the stable timestamp and recovered checkpoint snapshot. The checkpoint transaction snapshot details are saved at the end of every checkpoint are recovered and used as a recovered checkpoint snapshot.

Overview of rollback to stable

Rollback to stable scans each and every table present in the database except metadata Metadata (Architecture Guide) to remove the modifications from the table that are more than stable timestamp and recovered checkpoint snapshot.

In the process of removing newer modifications from the table, all the in-memory updates are aborted and the on-disk version updates are replaced with an update from history store otherwise the data store version is removed.

Rollback to stable is performed in three phases

  1. WT startup
  2. WT shutdown
  3. Application initiated

To improve the performance of rollback to stable operation, rollback to stable will perform only on particular tables that need rollback. Rollback to stable doesn't operate on logged tables as the updates on these are stable when the transaction gets committed.

Stable update of rollback to stable

According to rollback to stable, the stable version of update is an update that has durable timestamp of less than or equal to the stable timestamp and it's transaction id must be committed according to the checkpoint snapshot.

Pre-conditions required for rollback to stable

To perform rollback to stable, there shouldn't be any transaction activity happening in the WiredTiger.

Checks performed on a table by rollback to stable

Rollback to stable consider a table to be processed for rollback based on the following conditions.

  1. Table is modified
  2. The checkpoint durable start/stop timestamp is greater than the rollback timestamp.
  3. There is no durable timestamp in any checkpoint.
  4. Has prepared updates
  5. Has updates from transactions greater than checkpoint snapshot (only in restart phase)

There are some special conditions where the table is skipped for rollback to stable.

  1. Empty file
  2. Table has timestamp updates but there is no stable timestamp set.
  3. Files that don't exist
  4. Files that are corrupted.

If the table has no timestamp updates, then the history store table is scanned to remove any historical versions related to this table as these older versions no longer required.

Once all the tables are process for rollback to stable, at the end the history store is processed to remove any unstable updates more than the stable timestamp.

How rollback to stable fixes the unstable updates

Once a table is identified to perform rollback to stable, it reads the pages into the cache if they don't exist and process it to remove the unstable updates.

There are two types of rollbacks that rollback to stable performs:

  1. Rolling back unstable fast truncate
  2. Rolling back unstable updates

All internal pages are traversed to rollback unstable fast truncate operations and leaf pages are traversed to remove the unstable updates.

Once the leaf page is identified to rollback the updates, it is performed in the following order.

  1. Check smallest insert lists on the page
  2. Traverse through all the on-disk keys a. Check update list b. Check insert list c. Check the on-disk version if no stable update found in the update list.
  3. Traverse through the reconciled pages to abort any history store updates.

How rollback to stable aborts in-memory updates

Traverse through all the updates in the update list and abort them until a stable update is found.

How rollback to stable aborts on-disk update

If the start time pair is not stable try to find a valid update from the history store that is stable to replace the on-disk version otherwise remove the on-disk key. In case if the stop time pair if exists and if its not stable, restore the on-disk update again into the update list.

To remove any existing update, rollback to stable adds globally visible tombstone to the key update list and this key will get removed later during the reconciliation.

Note: As of now, rollback to stable don't work on removing on-disk columnar updates.

Rollback to stable history store search

Rollback to stable searches the history store to find a stable update to replace an unstable update in the data store. It searches the history store with the given data store key with a maximum timestamp and traverse back till a stable update found. If no valid update is found the data store key is removed.

Skipping reading unnecessary pages into memory

Rollback to stable doesn't load the pages that don't have any unstable updates to be removed to improve the performance of rollback to stable by verifying the time aggregated values with the stable timestamp or recovered checkpoint snapshot during the tree walk.