Exalogic

Exacloud, CloudLogic, Exalogic aka “Cloud in a box” sounds to me like you’re buying way more capacity than you need.

I like the idea of buying these big boxes with everything pre-configured appropriately.

After all, I’m waiting to embark on an upgrade to 11gR2 but what’s holding it up is that the boxes need to be built and configured internally which takes lots of time and money and red tape. And probably won’t be done 100% right first time…

But on the other hand, aren’t these big boxes all a bit back to the future?

It also strikes me that infrastructure is on a completely different trend at the minute compared to modern, agile software development trends with YAGNI principles etc.

If you don’t really, really need it now, why pay today’s price for tomorrow’s infrastructure?

But hey, what do I know about middleware apart from what it tends to do to my databases…

Finally, a quote from Marcel Kratochvil’s thought-provocative Foreign Key discussion paper:

As for Middleware, I will finish with the observation that most sites do not require Middleware. Scalability can be achieved by efficient database programming and ensuring the database logic and objects reside next to each other. Middleware only offers solutions for sites that require serious scalability or have legacy systems. Generally sites using a Middleware layer will produce a culture that encourages inefficient programming habits because they insist on hiding the database from the programmer (who might not even know what the database is) and adopt the mentality that the bandwidth between the middle tier and the database is infinite. This will not lead to a scalable application but rather the opposite.

Actually, that wasn’t the quote I went looking for. But it seemed to fit the context. What I was looking for was this one from the same source, which is what Exalogic and it’s “direct connection to Exadata” initially reminded me of slightly:

So within five years we will start to see the move away from 3 tier and back to a 2 tier model (but not the client/server model) for most applications. It will prove to be cheaper, easier to manage and will be scalable. The middleware layer will move into the database and the database server will become more sophisticated.

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3 Responses to Exalogic

  1. Hi Dom,

    Maybe the reason hardware is not bought and configured in the same way that software is “Agile developed” is that you can’t afford the impact of YAGNI, which invariably results in a load of BBOB down the line (Badly Bolted on Boll0xs). You can tell even a fairly young system which is doing much more than it was designed to do as it has a structure that would make William Heath Robinson scratch his head at…

    Being a little more serious, I’ve never quite understood why so many sites seem to buy hardware with so little consideration of staggered expansion. Buy servers with half the memory complement it can take, half the CPU quota, only half the disk array populated (not fully populated with small disk you swap out, half populated, so you get the benefit of more spindles and thus flater performance as demand increases and you buy more disk). Then if the system needs more bandwidth in any area, you can get it. We did this back at the start of the 90′s…

    I guess like big box/small box, thin client/thick client, waterfall development/RAD development, it just goes around and around and around in cycles…

    I wonder when proper ERD will come back into vogue, I really miss ERD.

    • dombrooks says:

      With the Exa* range, I guess you can easily expand, starting with a quarter rack.

      I didn’t give my thoughts much thought, if you know what I mean. Dump it and move on

      Going back to agile software development, you’d think that for effective plug and play commodity developers, one of the first things you’d need to give them would be an ERD?

      If I was doing any significant greenfield development, I’d be producing ERD – you gotta, right? It looks so impressive to stick up on the wall and then you watch people stare at it all confused and managers nodding approvingly, expecially if you put some colour on it ;)

      But it’s been a few years since I did anything remotely greenfield. It’s been more like brownfield for quite a while. And one of those brownfield sites that’s really just a grassed over landfill site…

  2. Gary says:

    I wonder about the Sales strategy. Maybe target government level with the sales and let them run their own local Amazon-style clouds. It would be an answer to the perceived risk of off-shoring data through commercial cloud providers

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