February 23, 2010

When to migrate your database?

Why migrate your database? Efficiency and availability problems are harming your business - reports are out of date, your batch processing window is nearing its limits, outages (unplanned/planned) frequently halt work. Database consolidation removes the costs that result from a heterogeneous database environment (DBAs time, database vendor pricing, database versions, hardware, OSs, patches, upgrades etc.). OK, so the driving forces for migration are clear,  what now?

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February 02, 2010

Scale out your identity management

BigDataMatters is focused on the issues faced when processing and managing large amounts of data. In light of this, it would be a crime not to blog about the security of this data. Over the next few weeks, I will write a series of posts focused on Identity management in the enterprise. Before you read any more, how is your identity secured?

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December 17, 2009

Oracle and IBM databases: Disk-based vs In-memory

The case for in-memory databases (IMDB) can be made in three simple points (1) performance - data is kept in RAM so no disk I/O limitations (2) HA with built in fail-over (3) support for relational schema and SQL. Current disk based RDBMS can run out of steam when processing large data. Can these problems be solved by migrating from a disk based RDBMS to an IMDB? Any limitations? To find out, I tested one of each from the two leading vendors who together hold 70% of the market share - Oracle's 11g and TimesTen 11g, and IBM's DB2 v9.5 and solidDB 6.3.

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November 23, 2009

Big Data on Grids or on Clouds?

Wolfgang Gentzsch, Senior Strategist at GridwiseTech, Open Grid Forum, and EU Project DEISA


Now that we have a new computing paradigm, Cloud Computing, how can Clouds help our data? Replace our internal data vaults as we hoped Grids would? Are Grids dead now that we have Clouds? Despite all the promising developments in the Grid and Cloud computing space, and the avalanche of publications and talks on this subject, many people still seem to be confused about internal data and compute resources, versus Grids versus Clouds, and they are hesitant to take the next step. I think there are a number of issues driving this uncertainty.

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October 28, 2009

Need for change in your IT infrastructure

Companies earnings outstrip forecasts, consumer confidence is retuning and city bonuses are back. What does this mean for business? Growth! After the recent years of cost cutting in IT budgets, there is the sudden fear induced from increased demand. Pre-existing trouble points in IT infrastructures that have lain dormant will suddenly be exposed. Monthly reporting and real time analytics will suffer as data grows. IT departments across the land will be crying out “The engine canna take no more captain”. What can be done?

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October 21, 2009

Manage virtualized sprawl with VRMs

The essence of my work is coming into daily contact with innovative technologies. A recent example was at the request of a partner company who wanted to answer- which one of these tools will best solve my virtualized datacenter headache? After initial analysis all the products could be classified as tools that troubleshoot VM sprawl, but there was no universally accepted term for them. The most descriptive term  that I found was Virtual Resource Manager (VRM) from DynamicOps. As I delved deeper into their workings, the distinction between VRMs and Private Clouds became blurred. What are the differences?

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October 08, 2009

Pilgrimage to OracleWorld

Oracle OpenWorld 2009 starts next week (11–15 October) in the Moscone Center, San Francisco. It is the annual event for all things Oracle - 1,800 sessions, 400 partner exhibits, keynotes from the world’s technology leaders, hands-on labs, and more. With such a wealth of information available, the canny attendee will have to focus their attention on the issues that are hindering their IT's infrastructure. What is worth seeing?

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September 25, 2009

Private Data Cloud: 'Do It Yourself' with Eucalyptus

Why are Enterprises implementing Private Clouds if the Public Cloud deployment model is gaining in popularity day-by-day? Guy Rosen summarizes Public Cloud growth within the user base of the  Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2). Since its debut in 2006, 8.4 million EC2 instances have been launched. Impressive as these statistics are, many enterprises still consider the Public Cloud as currently a no-go area. Reasons include data security  and SLA concerns, data compliance/governance regulations and the complexity of migrating legacy applications. This is where Private Clouds step-in.

Private Clouds provide many of the benefits of the Public Cloud, namely elastic scalability, faster time-to-market and reduced OpEX, all within the Enterprises own perimeter that complies to its governance. Leading commercial Private Cloud products include VMware, Univa UD, Unisys. Open source solutions include products like Globus Nimbus, Enomaly Elastic Computing Platform, RESERVOIR and Eucalyptus.

Yesterday, I attended the Webinar “Convergence of Physical, Virtual and Cloud, during which Dr. Rich Wolski, Chief Technology Officer of  Eucalyptus Systems, described Eucalyptus as Private Cloud data storage. This interested me and I set about learning more.

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September 15, 2009

Infinispan narrows the gap between open source and commercial data caches

Recently I attended a lecture presented by Manik Surtani, JBoss Cache & Infinispan project lead. The goal of the talk was to provide a technical overview of both products and outline Infinispan's road-map. Infinispan is the successor to the open-source JBoss Cache. JBoss Cache was originally targeted at simple web page caching and Infinispan builds on this to take it into the Cloud paradigm.

Why did I attend? Well, over the past few years I have worked on projects that have used commercial  distributed caching (aka data grid) technologies such as GemFire, GigaSpaces XAP or Oracle Coherence. These projects required more functionality than is currently provided by open-source solutions such as memcached or EHCache. Looking at the road-map for Infinispan, I was struck by its ambition – will it provide the functionality that I need?

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September 03, 2009

What's new in Oracle's 11g release?

As probably most of you are already aware, Oracle have just released the second version of Oracle 11g ( known as 11gR2 in Oracle circles) for Linux. Solaris and Windows versions will follow later this year. This is no surprise for me as I was informed about this event almost one year ago in the Oracle Partner Network newsletter.

It is great news for all administrators who complained that Oracle took a step backwards when it released 11gR1, citing that the previous version (Oracle 10gR2) had better stability and faster performance in some functionality as explained here.

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