Moving DataWarehouses on to Cloud

Cloud computing by definition refers to the on-demand provision of computational resources (data, software) via a computer network, rather than from a local computer. Users or clients can submit a task, to the service provider, without actually possessing the software or hardware. So far, most cloud use cases focus on application servers. Yet, there are many reasons our clients (specially small and medium business) also need a “database cloud” for database management systems (DBMSs), data, and data-driven applications such as business intelligence (BI) and data warehousing (DW).

How cloud can help our clients?
Going cloud has the following advantages…

  • Higher availability and performance – A good selling point to the CTOs
  • Lower capital and operational cost – A good selling point to the CEOs
  • Efficient use of data servers
  • Higher agility to provide data resources (Eg. to do some intensive BI computation or creation of temporary storage)
  • In DataWarehousing environment there are always time where the data volumes or computational requirements hits a hill or valley (spikes or subsides). Cloud is well suited for that.

Private Vs Public cloud?
For the beginners, here is a basic difference between the Private and Public cloud.

Public clouds are available as services over the Internet from a third-party provider. Users of public clouds do not own the physical infrastructure upon which they are running enterprise software. Instead, they rent time, services, and storage space on a public cloud.

Private clouds are set up in house by an enterprise. A central IT group sets up the private cloud and provides it as a service to other organizations within the enterprise. In this way, the private cloud is akin to enterprise infrastructure for IT. That’s why private clouds are sometimes called enterprise clouds or infrastructure clouds.

Although the public cloud is secure enough, the DW client may not be comfortable in going on public cloud due to data privacy. A client may not be happy to hand over the sensitive data to a third party. The best practices to move the enterprise data in and out of the cloud are not so clear.

Conclusion:
A cloud is more likely to scale up and adapt to multiple database workloads with minimal tuning than a traditional, report oriented DW platform. Companies should strongly consider implementing their DW and BI needs on a clouds. Small and medium businesses can choose a public cloud (Like Amazon EC2) to be ready to face the sudden increase in the data needs. Established clients who are not too confident handing over their data to public cloud, can opt for a private cloud. IBM InfoSphere Information Server provides trusted, scalable and “Pay as you go” data integration solution running on Amazon EC2. More information on this can be found here.

Useful Links: Products and Pricing for IBM Information Server on the Amazon Cloud

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