Exalytics - BI and Big Data Tuned to Perfection
Analytics as we know is all about gaining insights from data to aid effective decision making. However, the vision of delivering fast, interactive, insightful analytics has eluded most of large Enterprises.
Time pressures, ever changing requirements, business funding have traditionally been bottlenecks in this vision, however the major challenges come from fact that most of the analytical solutions require different vendor hardware, software, storage and networking integrations. The ever increasing data volumes, the types of information assets and the channels in today's enterprises are posing serious challenges for Databases and Business Intelligence systems to handle. While this is a reality, another key aspect is the business user's increasing demand to have analysis, insights into this large volume almost instantaneously. The problem can't only be addressed by adding faster microprocessor chips, hardware as the challenge lies in the data storage, its retrieval & processing.
Oracle Open World Conference, on Oct 2nd will be marked as a key date in history as Oracle put up it's strong foot on the Big Data and In-Memory solution space to take up SAP's HANA, and other smaller players in the Big Data space. This day Larry Ellision unveiled Oracle's Exalytics Intelligence machine. The launch was preceeded by an overview of the series of Oracle's line of systems that combine hardware, software, networking and storage stacks.
First in the Exa-family came the Exadata a finely tuned Database appliance machine to ensure your Database is synchronized with hardware and tuned for perfection. Next in line was to onboard the applications and remove the performance bottlenecks with applications, and there came the Exalogic (Weblogic platform for hosting the applications) again fine tuned for performance of applications with the hardware bundling. The key to this entire series is a strategy to have highest performance for the lowest cost, as Ellison puts quoted "For a given task, it will cost you less on an Exadata than it would on a plain old commodity server." And the brain behind this strategy was to "Parallel Everything". According to Ellision "These machines should never fail, ever fail. Hardware breaks, software breaks too, but having a parallel architectures your should be tolrent to those failures". With Exalogic the Java based applications are 10-times faster, and allows for serving more users at the same time.
Finally the 3rd addition in Exa-family was to have an Analytical solution that handles both Big data challanges and in-Memory to provide "Speed of Thought" analytical responses. And here we are with a power packed solution having following:
1. 4x10 Core Intel Xiom CPUs (40 Core Processors)
2. 1 TB of DRAM, additionally can hold 5-10TB of data in memory due to compression techniques
3. Advanced Visualization and Exploration, BI foundation with additional capabilities for Mobile BI enablement
4. Optimized Infiniband connectivity to Exadata and Exalogic - to leverage your investments in Exadata and Exalogic
5. Columnar compression techniques - allows for storing more data in memory, with no network latency and disk I/O
6. Provides fastest performance for relational and MOLAP business intelligence applications, EPM and large scale mobile BI applications
7. Oracle's TimesTen in-memory database optimized for BI
Two keywords sum up the Exalytics solution "Speed of Thought Analytics" and "Desktop-like Experience".
What lies in future on those lines - Potentially a "Big Data Appliance" that may include Hadoop for large scale processing and No-SQL database from Oracle.
One things sure that this is a bold step in Oracle stamping it's authority in the new Database world, and taking to next level for Big Data, in-Memory and Analytics.The promises made by this release are to be realized, and certainly will be amazing to see some of advanced visualization capabilities being showcased by Larry Ellision on Exalytics.