Toe in the Cloud



The Actian VectorWise beta program garnered a lot of interest from existing Actian customers and partners and from shiny new prospects looking for a BI solution that could provide real-time analytics without breaking the bank.   In a couple of cases the beta roll-out was stalled pending approval and procurement of hardware.   Getting feedback from real-world scenarios is crucial to the success of any new product so we needed to look ‘outside the box’ (excuse the deliberate pun) to keep the momentum going.   We immediately thought of setting up a pre-configured AMI with everything needed to get started with Actian VectorWise, but we were concerned that perhaps the performance of cloud storage would be an issue.   After some testing with various data volumes on Amazon’s EBS we were delighted to note that the performance was far better than predicted to the point of being an acceptable platform for Actian VectorWise deployment.   We had a number of our beta sites test in the Cloud and the feedback we received was very positive.  

Given our success with the Amazon EC2  the obvious next question was what about private clouds, other public clouds, hybrid clouds where part of the infrastructure is in a private cloud and part in a public cloud, the scenarios were endless.   To build solutions for all of the various combinations was going to be time consuming and time is money!  

A few weeks ago during one of our regular calls with Red Hat re our Cloud Foundations collaboration mention was made of a new innovation that would allow us to pre-assemble the components we wanted to include in our machine image and choose the deployment platform from within the development environment.  This will greatly speed-up and simplify the production and testing of Actian solutions for all of the various cloud types and provide a flexible platform for innovation.   

The massive demand for mobile applications has resulted in the need for a reliable and scalable platform to support these applications and the cloud provides that platform.   Embracing the production of standards in collaboration with others, who know what it means to build business critical applications, will mean that whether you use mobile applications to close that next big deal, or to find the nearest happy-hour, the technology stack behind it will ensure your needs are met.

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About Emma McGrattan

As SVP of Engineering at Actian, Emma leads development for the Actian Vector team, including the Ingres and X100 components, and the Actian Matrix Planner team. A leading authority in DBMS technologies, Emma is celebrating 20 years in Ingres and Actian Engineering.

View all posts by Emma McGrattan →

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