Online Transaction Database

In recent years, clustering has become the technology of choice for database systems. It has proven to be the most efficient way to meet today’s business requirements: high performance, high-availability, and scalability at a lower cost of ownership. In order to achieve these goals it is critical to choose the right interconnect solution. 

One of the most important parameters that a business process must meet is its Recovery Time Objective (RTO), which defines the maximum allowed downtime of a service due to failure. Not meeting RTO can result in the unacceptable consequences associated with a break in business continuity. As most enterprise applications use databases, RTO must also include the time required to restore the entire database. For example, the expected RTO for databases used in data warehouses is between 12 hours and a few days. However, this RTO range surely cannot apply to Online Transaction Processing (OLTP) systems, where the expected RTO is much more challenging and is in the order of minutes to a few hours, depending on the size of the database storage. 

Recently, a tier-1 Fortune 100 Web2.0 company wanted to build a high performance database system that would be capable of handling tens of millions of mobile user requests per day in real time, while keeping the total cost of ownership intact.

The company's original database system was based on 1GE network technology, which presented a number of challenges: Scaling the architecture and technology infrastructure was expensive and time consuming; the company's ability to meet the demands of a near-real-time response to its mobile customers was limited; and, in case of database failure, it took them more than 7 days to restore the database system, which was extremely slow compared to their 6-hour goal. This brought the company to consider using a faster and more efficient interconnect technology that would enable the company to meet all these demands, while also cutting down the costs associated with maintaining the infrastructure.

Working jointly with Mellanox Technologies, a leading supplier of end-to-end connectivity solutions for data center servers and storage, a modular database clustered solution was developed that utilizes Mellanox end-to-end FDR 56Gb/s InfiniBand technology. The solution supports the deployment of a single database across a cluster of servers and provides superior fault tolerance, performance, and scalability without any need to change applications. The solution provides a near-real-time response for the mobile users and also a 4-hour recovery time, 33% faster than the company's target. In addition, it offers customer continuous uptime for all of its database applications, on-demand scalability, lowered computing costs, and record-breaking performance.