Conor O'Mahony's Database Diary

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Archive for the ‘IBM Netezza’ Category

NYSE Euronext uses Netezza to Manage their “Big Data”

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NYSE Euronext operates multiple securities exchanges, including the New York Stock Exchange and Euronext. As you might imagine, securities exchanges present significant data management challenges. But NYSE Euronext didn’t just want to have a transactional system, they wanted to do much more with their data, further increasing the challenges. At the 2011 IBM Information On Demand (IOD) conference, NYSE Euronext described their challenges and the solution they chose. In particular, they highlight Netezza’s tremendous performance and how fast it is to get up-and-running with Netezza.

Not only is it easy to get up-and-running with Netezza, but it is easy to manage your environment on an ongoing basis. You can hear for yourself in this short video segment…


Written by Conor O'Mahony

February 24, 2012 at 12:02 pm

IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator—Bringing Netezza to the Mainframe

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Now that the IBM Information on Demand (IOD) and International DB2 User Group (IDUG) conferences are behind me, I have time to blog about some of the great announcements from those conferences. Probably the announcement that generated the most interest among conferences attendees is the new release of the IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator (IDAA). This product takes advantage of Netezza to accelerate analytics queries on DB2 for z/OS.

The way it works is… you specify the data whose analysis you want to speed up, and a copy of that data is placed on Netezza (DB2 for z/OS continues to be the system of record for all data). Then, when DB2 for z/OS receives a query, an optimizer determines whether that query should be handled by DB2 for z/OS or by IBM Netezza. Here is a chart from the IDUG conference that summarizes the query execution flow.

IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator

Conceptually, you could almost think of the IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator as a mainframe specialty processor for analytics. I know its not actually a specialty processor, but it does perform the processing involved with complex analytics queries. It also makes life easier for database administrators who often struggle with long-running complex queries, by providing them with an accelerator that does not require additional tuning. To see how much faster it is, here is another chart from the IDUG conference. It shows the experiences of IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator Beta program participants.

IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator Performance

If you run complex analytical queries on DB2 for z/OS, it is almost certainly worth you while to learn more about the IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator.

Written by Conor O'Mahony

November 18, 2011 at 9:00 am

What Happens when you pair Netezza with DB2 for z/OS?

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The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) recently paired Netezza with their transactional environment, which includes DB2 for z/OS, and achieved remarkable results. Often when you read customer success stories, you are bombarded with metrics. The AARP success story has those metrics:

  • 1400% improvement in data loading time
  • 1700% improvement in report response time
  • 347% ROI in three years

But metrics tell only part of the story. And sometimes the story gets a lot more interesting when you dig a little deeper.

AARP had been using Oracle Database for their data warehouse. But their system simply could not keep up with the demand. As Margherita Bruni from AARP says, “our analysts would run a report, then go for coffee or for lunch, and, maybe if they were lucky, by 5:00 p.m. they would get the response—it was unacceptable—the system was so busy writing the new daily data that it didn’t give any importance to the read operations performed by users.” The stresses on their system were so great that in 2009 alone, their Oracle Database environment had more than 30 system failures. To compound matters, these system performance issues meant that full backups were not possible. Instead AARP would back up only a few critical tables, which is a less than desirable disaster recovery scenario. Clearly, something had to be done.

AARP chose to move their 36 TB data warehouse to Netezza. You can see from the metrics above that they achieved remarkable performance improvements. But what do those performance improvements mean. Well, for the IT staff, they mean that they are relieved of a huge daily burden. Their old system required one full-time database administrator (DBA) and one half-time SAN network support person. These people are now, for the most part, free to work on other projects. And more importantly, they don’t have to deal with the stress of the old environment any more.

But the benefits are not being enjoyed only by the IT staff. They are also being enjoyed by the business analysts, who according to Bruni “could not believe how quickly results were provided—they were so shocked that their work could be accomplished in a matter of hours rather than weeks that, initially, they thought data was cached.” She goes on to say that “one analyst, who is now a director, told us that he used the extra time for other projects, which ultimately helped him become more successful and receive a promotion.” Now that is what I call a great impact statement. The metrics are great, but when someone is freed up to do work that gets them a promotion, that’s a very tangible illustration of the difference that Netezza can make.

Another illustration of the difference is the impact it had on the group that implemented the Netezza system. As Bruni says “after we moved to IBM Netezza, the word spread that we were doing things right and that leveraging us as an internal service was really smart; we’ve gained new mission-critical areas, such as the social-impact area which supports our Drive to End Hunger and Create the Good campaigns.” It certainly looks like you can add IT management to the list of constituents who have had a positive career impact as a result of moving from Oracle Database to IBM Netezza.

For more information about this story, see AARP: Achieving a 347 percent ROI in three years from BI modernization effort.

Written by Conor O'Mahony

September 27, 2011 at 10:33 am

Netezza Video by DJ Steve Porter

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If you saw the NBA video mix ad campaign during last year’s NBA Playoffs in the US, you will be familiar with DJ Steve Porter’s work. It is a fusion of video remixing, together with his DJ skills. Even if you were not lucky enough to catch that ad campaign, you may have come across him from his many hugely successful viral videos on YouTube. Well, DJ Steve Porter has used his unique style to create a video for IBM Netezza. I think you’ll agree that it is not your typical corporate video.

Written by Conor O'Mahony

September 22, 2011 at 8:57 am

Posted in IBM Netezza, Video

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