In-Memory Databases: Their Rising Popularity and Under Armour’s use of SAP HANA
Why the need for in-memory databases?
In today’s business world “speed” and “agility” are two buzzy concepts that all companies aim to achieve. For the longest time advancements on the development side of the house outpaced that of the infrastructure, but with the evolution of public cloud providers, hyperconvergence, PaaS and a multitude of other offerings, IT now has the means to achieve the speed and agility that is required of them.
The new IT stack contains tiny superstars that are not featured prominently, one of which is the database layer. Traditionally databases are stored to flash or disk. While these methods are durable, the constant movement of data from memory to disk and vice versa degraded performance and slowed down queries. The need for a faster, more performant database spurred the experimentation and ultimate proliferation of in-memory databases.
What is an in-memory database?
In its purest form, an in-memory database stores data in main memory as opposed to disk. In-memory databases have evolved from many practices but the two most popular methods today are pure, all in-memory database and a hybrid method of both in-memory and disk. The Dynamic RAM (DRAM for short) lives on the server and all operations are conducted in-memory. By eliminating the need for disk I/O when using data, fewer instructions are needed leading to an increase in speed at which data can be accessed or manipulated. With the hybrid method, a portion of the data is kept in main memory for ease of access, while other, less crucial data is stored to disk. Hybrid models are typically favored due to their ability to reduce cost and risk around pure in-memory. To determine where data should be stored it is common practice to base it on the frequency of access of the particular records. The more frequently accessed (hot) data should be stored in main memory and the less frequently accessed (cold) data should be stored in disk.
Read the entire article here, In-Memory Databases: Their Rising Popularity and Under Armour’s use of SAP HANA
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