October 29, 2010 – With rumors flying about whether Oracle will make a storage acquisition, many are assessing the company’s strength as a storage player without making an acquisition. At least in the case of the latest version of its Exadata system, Oracle may have a winner.
Exadata is tightly coupled to the Oracle database, and leverages Sun servers, storage and the ZFS file system. End-user response to Exadata II, which was introduced in March, appears to be positive.
Enterprise Storage Forum freelancer Drew Robb spoke to Exadata II users at last months’ OpenWorld conference. Here are some snippets:
Jonathan Levine, COO of LinkShare, likes the flash-based cache in Exadata II, which he says has provided his company with an 8X to 10X performance boost.
“Exadata’s data loading is constant, regardless of the reporting load,” says Levine, adding that he has reduced the latency window from about eight seconds to less than four in the company’s analytics data warehouse system. “Using traditional storage for databases is not tenable with a large volume of queries. It just can’t compete with storage that is SQL-aware like Exadata.”
RL Polk, a provider of market intelligencein the automotive industry, is another Exadata II user that applauds the integration of flash devices in the Exadata system.
“[Exadata II] is a quantum leap over the [earlier Exadata] due to fast cache and compression,” says Doug Miller, director of global database development and operations at RL Polk. “Flash is huge. We can put 2.5TB into flash, which makes scans almost instantaneous.”
“Exadata has seven storage cells, with each cell having 12 hard drives and 385GB of flash, so queries can be fulfilled very fast due to the massively parallel architecture,” Miller adds.
Read the full case studies on Enterprise Storage Forum: “Oracle Exadata in the real world”
Related article: “EMC takes on Oracle with Greenplum appliance for ‘big data’”