RDBMS For Big Data: How to Choose?
RDBMS For Big Data: Five Features You Must ConsiderHours of online research still had not prepared me for the intimidating wall of mobile phones at my local Best Buy. Looking at dozens of different phones sharing hundreds of features, with options for everything from carriers to covers, was it any surprise that I just wanted to give up and go home? Or at least buy a new television instead.
With the rapid development of database technology these days, and the explosion of Big Data, I suspect many IT decision makers are having the same trouble selecting the right products for their companies. Too many options, in some cases, are almost worse than having none at all.
As technology expands, it can be difficult for IT managers to know which systems are dynamic enough to grow and change with the times, and which will fall by the wayside. Just as I stood, paralyzed, before a wall of too much choice in a big box store, you may avoid making any decisions at all, rather than risk a wrong one.
But even as information options proliferate, Robert D. Schneider — a Silicon Valley–based technology consultant and author — points out in a recent article that one old standby holds up to the test of time: the relational database management system (RDBMS). Because RDBMS has ruled the data center for them 20 years, it’s often the primary system of record for many enterprises, notes Schneider. And its ongoing importance is reflected in the number of cutting-edge technologies designed with RDBMS in mind.
Not surprisingly, RDBMS vendors have been hard at work updating and improving their technology. So if you are in the process of assessing and selecting a relational database, there may be many more factors to consider than when RDBMS first appeared on the scene.
The RDBMS Checklist
Schneider offered these easy-to-remember guidelines to help you choose the strongest and most dynamic RDBMS for your needs.
1) Reliability. The fastest and most comprehensive database is useless unless it’s up and running when needed. The ideal RDBMS makes it easy to secure and safeguard data across the network, so critical operations are always at the ready. Every enterprise requires different solutions, but whether a single protected server or a server farm, a strong RDBMS configuration builds in redundancies and offers overlapping tactics to keep its data access constantly on hand.
2) Adaptability. Corporate needs changes daily, sometimes hourly. Any RDBMS worth its salt will be able to adapt to those changes quickly and efficiently. This means not having to rely on frequent, costly, and cumbersome hardware upgrades. Instead, the database itself should be able to adapt, offering inventive memory and thread-management techniques that do more with less, and squeeze more storage out of existing networks.
3) Scalability. The best RDBMS will adapt to the most taxing demands of its enterprise. An increase in users and task complexity should not slow the speed of information retrieval or network reliability. The database should make use of data compression, in-memory processing, database visualization and, if possible, the power of multiple servers to provide a seamless experience for end users.
4) Predictability. In order to meet strict service level agreements, the RDBMS should deploy quickly, without need for complicated installation, extensive employee training or much support staff. It should be able to read and support regularly vacillating workloads and also be able to handle unscheduled spikes in demand with few issues.
5) Manageability. The RDBMS is a long-term investment, and companies should treat it as such, factoring in long-term expenses such as software licensing and staffing expenditures. A cost-effective RDBMS offers streamlined installation, automated tuning and error correction and intuitive tooling, all with minimal training requirements.
For more details on information management and why the relational database is still so essential, read Schneider’s article (registration required). And if you find any articles that will help me choose a smart phone, feel free to pass it along.
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