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It is also possible to run a secondary namenode, which despite its name does not act as a namenode. Its main role is to periodically merge the namespace image with the edit log to prevent the edit log from becoming too large. The secondary namenode usually runs on a separate physical machine because it requires plenty of CPU and as much memory as the namenode to perform the merge. It keeps a copy of the merged namespace image, which can be used in the event of the namenode failing. However, the state of the secondary namenode lags that of the primary, so in the event of total failure ...


Cover of Hadoop: The Definitive Guide, 4th Edition


Secondary Name Node