SQL SERVER – Weekend Project – Experimenting with ACID Transactions, SQL Compliant, Elastically Scalable Database

Database technology is huge and big world. I like to explore always beyond what I know and share the learning. Weekend is the best time when I sit around download random software on my machine which I like to call as a lab machine (it is a pretty old laptop, hardly a quality as lab machine) and experiment it. There are so many free betas available for download that it’s hard to keep track and even harder to find the time to play with very many of them.  This blog is about one you shouldn’t miss if you are interested in the learning various relational databases.

NuoDB just released their Beta 7.  I had already downloaded their Beta 6 and yesterday did the same for 7.   My impression is that they are onto something very very interesting.  In fact, it might be something really promising in terms of database elasticity, scale and operational cost reduction. The folks at NuoDB say they are working on the world’s first “emergent” database which they tout as a brand new transitional database that is intended to dramatically change what’s possible with OLTP.  It is SQL compliant, guarantees ACID transactions, yet scales elastically on heterogeneous and decentralized cloud-based resources. Interesting note for sure, making me explore more.

Based on what I’ve seen so far, they are solving the architectural challenge that exists between elastic, cloud-based compute infrastructures designed to scale out in response to workload requirements versus the traditional relational database management system’s architecture of central control. Here’s my experience with the NuoDB Beta 6 so far:

First they pretty much threw away all the features you’d associate with existing RDBMS architectures except the SQL and ACID transactions which they were smart to keep.  It looks like they have incorporated a number of the big ideas from various algorithms, systems and techniques to achieve maximum DB scalability. From a user’s perspective, the NuoDB Beta software behaves like any other traditional SQL database and seems to offer all the benefits users have come to expect from standards-based SQL solutions.

One of the interesting feature is that one can run a transactional node and a storage node on my Windows laptop as well on other platforms – indeed interesting for sure. It’s quite amazing to see a database elastically scale across machine boundaries. So, one of the basic NuoDB concepts is that as you need to scale out, you can easily use more inexpensive hardware when/where you need it.  This is unlike what we have traditionally done to scale a database for an application – we replace the hardware with something more powerful (faster CPU and Disks).

This is where I started to feel like NuoDB is on to something that has the potential to elastically scale on commodity hardware while reducing operational expense for a big OLTP database to a degree we’ve never seen before. NuoDB is able to fully leverage the cloud in an asynchronous and highly decentralized manner – while providing both SQL compliance and ACID transactions.

Basically what NuoDB is doing is so new that it is all hard to believe until you’ve experienced it in action.  I will keep you up to date as I test the NuoDB Beta 7 but if you are developing a web-scale application or have an on-premise app you are thinking of moving to the cloud, testing this beta is worth your time. If you do try it, let me know what you think.  Before I say anything more, I am going to do more experiments and more test on this product and compare it with other existing similar products. For me it was a weekend worth spent on learning something new. I encourage you to download Beta 7 version and share your opinions here.

Reference: Pinal Dave (https://blog.sqlauthority.com)

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3 Comments. Leave new

  • Does NuoDB support distributed transactions?
    Can I use TransactionScope?


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