RESEARCH & RESOURCES

DW Appliances

Q&A with the Experts: DataFlux

A business intelligence or data warehouse implementation can be a formidable undertaking. On this page, leading business intelligence and data warehousing solution provider DataFlux share their answers to the questions they hear often from industry professionals. Mark Hammond, an independent consultant, provides his analyst viewpoint to each Q&A.

What are the advantages of using a data warehouse appliance based on a commodity versus a proprietary platform?

Commodity-based appliances offer significant advantages:

  • Major partnerships. Commodity players reduce risk by attracting the attention and support of major partners.
  • Rationalized research and development. Development is focused and advancement is quicker when harnessing the power of major partners to provide hardware reliability and innovation.
  • High availability. Commodity hardware offers higher reliability and improved mean time between failures (MTBF).
  • Performance and scalability at lower prices. Commodity players offer higher scalability and performance at lower cost because of strong competition.
  • Easier upgrade path. Plug and play prevents forklift upgrades.

Analyst Viewpoint

The increasing availability of commodity-based systems has introduced yet another twist in the fast-changing DW appliance market. Many appliances based on commodity hardware (e.g., Intel and AMD microprocessors) and software are competitively priced because vendors can sidestep the dedicated R&D required to develop and evolve proprietary systems, and over time commodity systems generally mature to approach, if not match, the performance of proprietary technology. Organizations in the market for a DW appliance need to weigh price, performance, data volumes, infrastructure integration, and energy efficiency considerations—as well as their long-term road map—in deciding between commodity and proprietary DW appliances.

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