Characterizing the Rate Region of the (4,3,3) Exact-Repair Regenerating Codes

Chao Tian

Exact-repair regenerating codes are considered for the case (n,k,d)=(4,3,3), for which a complete characterization of the rate region is provided. This characterization answers in the affirmative the open question whether there exists a non-vanishing gap between the optimal bandwidth-storage tradeoff of the functional-repair regenerating codes (i.e., the cut-set bound) and that of the exact-repair regenerating codes. To obtain an explicit information theoretic converse, a computer-aided proof (CAP) approach based on primal and dual relation is developed. This CAP approach extends Yeung's linear programming (LP) method, which was previously only used on information theoretic problems with a few random variables due to the exponential growth of the number of variables in the corresponding LP problem. The symmetry in the exact-repair regenerating code problem allows an effective reduction of the number of variables, and together with several other problem-specific reductions, the LP problem is reduced to a manageable scale. For the achievability, only one non-trivial corner point of the rate region needs to be addressed in this case, for which an explicit binary code construction is given.

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