Multi-Valued Connected Consensus: A New Perspective on Crusader Agreement and Adopt-Commit

Authors Hagit Attiya , Jennifer L. Welch

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Hagit Attiya
  • Department of Computer Science, Technion, Haifa, Israel
Jennifer L. Welch
  • Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, USA

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Hagit Attiya and Jennifer L. Welch. Multi-Valued Connected Consensus: A New Perspective on Crusader Agreement and Adopt-Commit. In 27th International Conference on Principles of Distributed Systems (OPODIS 2023). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 286, pp. 6:1-6:23, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2024)


Algorithms to solve fault-tolerant consensus in asynchronous systems often rely on primitives such as crusader agreement, adopt-commit, and graded broadcast, which provide weaker agreement properties than consensus. Although these primitives have a similar flavor, they have been defined and implemented separately in ad hoc ways. We propose a new problem called connected consensus that has as special cases crusader agreement, adopt-commit, and graded broadcast, and generalizes them to handle multi-valued inputs. The generalization is accomplished by relating the problem to approximate agreement on graphs. We present three algorithms for multi-valued connected consensus in asynchronous message-passing systems, one tolerating crash failures and two tolerating malicious (unauthenticated Byzantine) failures. We extend the definition of binding, a desirable property recently identified as supporting binary consensus algorithms that are correct against adaptive adversaries, to the multi-valued input case and show that all our algorithms satisfy the property. Our crash-resilient algorithm has failure-resilience and time complexity that we show are optimal. When restricted to the case of binary inputs, the algorithm has improved time complexity over prior algorithms. Our two algorithms for malicious failures trade off failure resilience and time complexity. The first algorithm has time complexity that we prove is optimal but worse failure-resilience, while the second has failure-resilience that we prove is optimal but worse time complexity. When restricted to the case of binary inputs, the time complexity (as well as resilience) of the second algorithm matches that of prior algorithms. The contributions of the paper are first, a deeper insight into the connections between primitives commonly used to solve the fundamental problem of fault-tolerant consensus, and second, implementations of these primitives that can contribute to improved consensus algorithms.

Subject Classification

ACM Subject Classification
  • Theory of computation → Distributed algorithms
  • graded broadcast
  • gradecast
  • binding
  • approximate agreement


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