When we look at any typical organization’s pain points, we see that maintaining a stable performance comes at its top priority/challenges with exponential increase in the volume of data along with other following challenges:-
Complexity in handling structured & unstructured data with varied business requirements, performance SLAs etc.
Different direct and indirect constraints imposed on database Scalability due to various isolated restriction on data center components like servers, networking, storage etc.
Manageability and access issues of database as the amount of data generated and collected are exploding.
Protecting the data at any cost as it will hit the reputation and goodwill of a company not to mention about the impending costs.
Ways to ingest/consume data by eliminating inefficiencies, automating processes and improving productivity.
When I looked into the above challenges, I was trying to think of a single vendor solution which will take care of all the issues mentioned above in a cost effective manner which will not only reduce the Capex and Opex substantially but will also facilitate the Oracle DBAs to contain the daily firefighting. At this moment I can only think of using Hyperconverged infrastructure(HCI) which will take care of all the issues mentioned above. Within the HCI domain, the Dell EMC VxRack is considered to be the best choice.
Let me now introduce VxRack as depicted in Figure 1. VxRack is a turnkey hyper-converged solution powered by VMware Cloud Foundation. These systems consist of pre-loaded software and compute, storage, and network components in a hyper-converged stack co-engineered by Dell EMC and VMware.VxRack capable of supporting both traditional and cloud-native workloads. VxRack starts with as few as 8 Dell PowerEdge server nodes and scale up by adding nodes one at a time, or scale out by adding racks. The domain of a single VxRack system can be 190+ nodes, spanning more than 8 cabinets, with PowerEdge R630 or R730xd systems that bring greater capacity and 40 percent more CPU performance without costing more money. Anyone who isn’t a hyper-scale provider and/or doesn’t have a vast “hardware as service” team, VxRack is for them.
Figure 1: VxRack Systems
There are 2 flavors of VxRack which work equally well with Oracle databases namely:-
1. Dell EMC VxRack System FLEX (VxRack FLEX)
2. Dell EMC VxRack System SDDC (VxRack SDDC)
The benefits of using VxRack Flex are as follows:-
Asymmetric scale: Configure the hyperconverged infrastructure to add compute and storage capabilities to address specific workload requirements of Oracle databases.
Bare metal: Use a physical Oracle database infrastructure to fetch data from the hard disk (remain physical) in a hyperconverged infrastructure.
Easy provisioning: Use automation to simplify management and storage lifecycle capabilities for efficient installation, running, and performance of Oracle databases.
Flexible personality support: Provision for multiple hypervisors and dedicated storage.
Elastic: Grow the system with more flexibility and options, as and when required, without application interruption or downtime.
Building blocks for growth: Use step-sized building blocks for future data-center environments.
Ready to use: Use a preconfigured, loaded, tested, and fully optimized IT stack, which is delivered from the factory as a fully assembled and supported solution to help run Oracle databases with minimal tuning of database configuration and performance parameters.
Compelling economics: Use a single support vendor, built-in management reporting, and automated updates to lower the total cost of ownership (TCO) and significantly improve your OPEX and CAPEX
The benefits of using VxRack SDDC are as follows:-
Dedicated Resource Pool : Workload domain feature that enables the creation of separate pools of resources that are dedicated to the Oracle databases
Lower TCO:Lower cost because the databases are part of a larger standardized infrastructure
Better Granularity level management: Ability to specify capacity, performance, and availability characteristics in an isolated workload domain.
VxRack Systems are ideal for Oracle databases because the infrastructure eliminates hardware complexities, and provides flexibility, performance, and protection at enterprise levels. For example, with the current VxRack System setup, database environment can be protected using Avamar software with the Data Domain system, Data Domain with Dell EMC DD Boos software for Oracle, and EMC RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines. Enterprise-class support for the hyperconverged infrastructure with lifecycle-system assurance ensures the best system performance. Other benefits of using VxRack Systems include:
All-flash storage configurations maximize performance for mission-critical workloads. You can deliver sub millisecond performance for physical reads and writes for Oracle databases.
Extreme scalability, enabling growth and performance by adding nodes. Adding nodes is seamless and non-disruptive to an existing VxRack System, making expansion easy.
The advantages of using the VxRack System with Oracle databases include:
A hyperconverged solution accelerates standardization, speeds up deployment, and simplifies IT operations.
Support for the entire integrated stack is through a single support organization for all layers, which helps to refocus investment from OPEX to CAPEX.
The database infrastructure ensures continued compliance with Oracle database licensing.
In my next blog, I will talk more about the details of Oracle Database licensing on VxRack and its components.