DejaView: A Personal Virtual Computer Recorder

Oren Laadan, Ricardo Baratto, Dan Phung, Shaya Potter, Jason Nieh

Proceedings of the 21st ACM Symposium on Operating Systems Principles (SOSP 2007), Stevenson, WA, October 14-17, 2007, pp. 279-292


As users interact with the world and their peers through their computers, it is becoming important to archive and later search the information that they have viewed. We present DejaView, a personal virtual computer recorder that provides a complete record of a desktop computing experi- ence that a user can playback, browse, search, and revive seamlessly. DejaView records visual output, checkpoints corresponding application and file system state, and cap- tures displayed text with contextual information to index the record. A user can then browse and search the record for any visual information that has been displayed on the desktop, and revive and interact with the desktop computing state corresponding to any point in the record. DejaView com- bines display, operating system, and file system virtualiza- tion to provide its functionality transparently without any modifications to applications, window systems, or operating system kernels. We have implemented DejaView and eval- uated its performance on real-world desktop applications. Our results demonstrate that DejaView can provide con- tinuous low-overhead recording without any user noticeable performance degradation, and allows browsing, search and playback of records fast enough for interactive use.



Columbia University Department of Computer Science