Official course description, subject to change:
Preliminary info last published 15/05-20

Distributed Systems MSc

Course info
ECTS points:
Course code:
Participants max:
Offered to guest students:
Offered to exchange students:
Offered as a single subject:
Price (single subject):
10625 DKK (incl. vat)
MSc. Master
MSc in Software Design
Course semester
Efterår 2021
30 August 2021
31 December 2021
Exam type
ingen censur
Grade Scale
bestået/ikke bestået
Exam Language
This course teaches the theoretical and practical foundations for distributed computing.

Programs of today typically exhibit aspects of concurrency (or parallelism), distribution, or mobility or even all of them. In a concurrent system parts of the programs proceed simultaneously - for example in different threads or using event dispatching. In a distributed system parts of the system are spread over a number of programs communicating over a network to cooperatively provide a service. The network may be anything from the local network in a building to the entire Internet.

The student will gain  theoretical and practical experience in concurrency and distributed computing. 

The course covers a number of topics, including: 

  • Communication over the network leads to dropped and reordered packets which requires robust request/reply and multicast protocols. 
  • Since programs communicate over an open and potentially faulty network, they must employ security, and it is difficult for them to synchronise on time, leaders, and data consistency. Protocols for encryption, authentication, authorisation, time synchronisation, logical time, consensus, and data distribution address such issues. 
  • In order to support changes and evolution of it-systems loosely coupled architectures such as Service Oriented Architecture are employed, as well as process-oriented architectures for combining services in process flows in an adaptable way. 
  • Mobile and Ubiquitous computing has become widespread with the integration of computers and mobile phones and tablets like Android and iOS. Moreover, sensors based on RFID tags, Bluetooth and GPS are becoming widespread – opening for new possibilities for applications such as location awareness, and new challenges for the implementations.

Formal prerequisites

In order to participate at this course you must be able to use all major elements of the Java language for implementing and testing medium sized programs, including threads, inheritance, packages, I/O, streams and serialisation. These competencies can be obtained by completing the mandatory programming module on the MSc programme Software Design or the first year of the BSc in Software Development.

Intended learning outcomes

After the course, the student should be able to:

  • Describe and use fundamental architectures, principles and models used in designing and constructing mobile and distributed systems.
  • Describe and use basic concepts in mobile and distributed systems for evaluation and designing of solutions to problems in the field
  • Implement distributed, and mobile systems in practice with the help of the above techniques
Ordinary exam
Exam type:
B: Oral exam, External (7-point scale)
Exam variation:
B22: Oral exam with no time for preparation.