// From Database Clouds to Big Data

Date: 01/17/2014

Contributors: Joe McKendrick


Organizations need to prepare for rising levels of big data streaming into their organizations. The ability to manage and assure 24x7x365 database performance, regardless of workloads and user demands, is key to agility and growth. Faster delivery of databases requires automated packaging and deployment processes, both at the initial instantiation and throughout the entire lifecycle of the databases in question including decommissioning. As data environments grow larger and consumers increasingly expect “on-demand” access, the ever-increasing complexity in governance requirements can potentially slow the roll out of database services. Database administrators face uphill challenges to address these challenges in today’s multi-layered and globally diverse data centers. Those who succeed are able to adapt and evolve by translating database services into critical services the business can depend on.

Key highlights and findings from the survey, which explore key insights into database manageability issues and solutions, include the following:

  • As demand for IT services and data volumes grow, so do the challenges with managing databases. Overall, data environments are not consolidated—enterprises are still running many separate databases for applications.
  • During the twelve months preceding this survey, business demand for database services as well as the associated data volumes grew by more than 20% on average. In contrast, most IT organizations are experiencing flat or shrinking budgets. Other factors such as substantial testing requirements and outdated management techniques are all contributing to a cost escalation and slow IT response.
  • Close to two-fifths of enterprises either already have or are considering running database functions within a private cloud. At least 50% will use non-production systems for database as a service deployments.
  • As the growth of data accelerates—both in terms of number of databases and in data volume—database administrators need to know how it will impact their systems. In these fast-expanding environments, most respondents have management responsibility at the database level of the technology stack in order to address issues. As private, hybrid and public cloud adoption increases, the challenge of being able to manage data moving into virtualized environments will accelerate as well.
  • Enterprises are beginning to get a better hold on managing database changes, leading to shorter cycle times throughout the database lifecycle. However, the work that goes into managing the database lifecycle is still the greatest consumer of respondents’ time. A majority still overwhelmingly perform a range of tasks manually, from patching databases to performing upgrades. Compliance remains important and requires attention. As databases move into virtualized and cloud environments, there will be a need for more comprehensive enterprise-wide testing.
  • Episodes of unplanned downtime are trending upward at many enterprises. When an outage does occur, respondents admit that it’s difficult to tell what the root causes may be. Only a quarter of respondents can tell, if cross-tier components are affecting database performance.
  • Close to half the respondents say they need visibility into the entire technology stack in order to do their job effectively. It includes everything from the database applications that encompass the service being provided to the business, down to the storage layer. The ultimate responsibility for troubleshooting application problems typically falls to database professionals, the survey finds.

FROM  DATABASE CLOUDS TO BIG DATA: 2013 IOUG Survey on Database Manageability was produced by Unisphere Research in partnership with the Independent Oracle Users Group and sponsored by Oracle.