Aggregated provenance and its implications in clouds

Muhammad Imran*, Helmut Hlavacs, Fakhri Alam Khan, Saima Jabeen, Fiaz Gul Khan, Sajid Shah, Mafawez Alharbi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Cloud computing follows a layered architecture where each layer targets a particular domain of end users. In such a layered architecture, provenance (the metadata that describes the derivation history of the object) of the individual layers is of significant importance to establish trust and authenticity. In a typical Cloud environment, each layer provides important provenance information which usually targets a particular domain of clients e.g. Cloud provider uses infrastructure provenance to track resource utilization. In the case of aggregated provenance, it becomes challenging to manage provenance information because of the relationships that exist within Cloud layers and the creator object. The existing techniques and systems to address provenance in Clouds usually work at a single layer of abstraction. These systems, however, fail to answer questions which require aggregated provenance from the individual layers. In this paper, we reason about the need of aggregated provenance, its significance and a proposed solution which works at different layers of abstraction for the management of provenance data. We also present a case study to signify the importance and necessity of collective provenance for various application domains.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)348-358
Number of pages11
JournalFuture Generation Computer Systems
StatePublished - Apr 2018
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Elsevier B.V.


  • Cloud
  • Layered architecture
  • Provenance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Networks and Communications


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