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LESSON - HP-Oracle Reference Configurations for Data Warehousing

By Chris Buss, World Wide Manager, BCS BI Marketing, HP, and Bill Nee, Senior Director, Database Product Marketing, Oracle Corporation

HP and Oracle jointly offer a rich set of reference configurations that provide standard components, predictable performance and rapid deployment for data warehouses between 200 GB and 1 TB in size. These reference configurations are built on the combined knowledge and experience of these two industry leaders and are an important component of the Oracle Information Appliance Initiative.


IT planners and architects have a wide range of technology options for their data warehouse (DW) applications. Each hardware platform decision requires them to research, and then balance, the tradeoffs between price, performance, long-term scalability, manageability, and vendor reputation. When rapid deployment is a key factor, the choice often spans dedicated DW hardware, rigidly prescribed single-vendor configurations, and building custom solutions from well-understood technologies. Such a range in choices often means complex, time-consuming decision cycles that drain staff time by necessitating the definition and management of benchmarks or proofs of concept. All of this takes away from the basic function of IT, which is to deliver information quickly to business users so that they can make sound, timely decisions.


As reported by the leading analyst firm IDC, HP is the world leader in infrastructure for strategic DW, and Oracle is the leading DW database. Together, HP and Oracle support many of the world's largest data warehouse deployments, as well as tens of thousands of smaller implementations.

To reduce the risk and deployment time for DW solutions, HP and Oracle have created a comprehensive set of reference configurations for Oracle's Information Appliance Initiative. These configurations draw upon both companies' extensive lab and performance benchmark investments as well as global experience supporting thousands of data warehouse and business intelligence customers. Reference configurations allow IT planners and architects to start from a "best-fit" hardware configuration that reflects their raw data size, database, operating system, processor, and node scaling preference. These configurations can then be optimized based on a customer's specific workload and requirements. For convenience, they are arranged into size groups, each scoped for a specific range of raw data sizes. Within each group, HP and Oracle offer a rich set of architecture and performance options.

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Figure 1. HP-Oracle reference configurations provide 40 configurations in a matrix model that covers key DW design points.

Each configuration reflects real-world DW customer environments and workloads, balancing processing power, storage, and throughput to provide predictable and cost-effective high performance. Achieving balanced system input/output (I/O) throughput specifically designed to satisfy the requirements of DW workloads was a key objective in developing the configurations. And HP-Oracle reference configurations are modular and can easily scale up by adding CPUs, nodes, or storage on an as-needed basis.

Some vendors encourage customers to purchase dedicated, proprietary hardware that cannot be repurposed as business needs change. Others recommend solutions from a narrowly prescribed set of single-vendor components. Neither approach delivers on the promise of open, flexible, IT solutions based on standardized technologies. Oracle-HP reference configurations combine architectural choice with predictable performance and standards-based technology.


IT staff time and resources are precious. HP-Oracle reference configurations enable IT departments to do more with less, more quickly, and at lower risk. Some immediate benefits for deploying data warehouse solutions built using these Reference Configurations include:

  • Simplified product selection and sizing process
  • A predefined set of core components to simplify purchasing
  • Simplified, rapid deployment with predictable performance
  • Off-the-shelf components to enable repurposing and lower risk
  • Proven, award-winning support, with access to performance and tuning services

In summary, HP-Oracle reference configurations provide optimal DW performance and enable customers to avoid common design pitfalls. Customers can more quickly and easily deploy high-performance data warehouse solutions for accelerated time-to-intelligence, reduced costs, and increased revenue.

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This article originally appeared in the issue of .

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