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How to Manage your Database Goldmine with Nutanix Solutions for Databases

By Chris Paap

Company data has become a goldmine of information from which companies can identify customer insights and discover the keys to business growth. Data has surpassed applications to become the central focus of organizations, becoming the new currency from which its value must be protected, utilized, and optimized. IT teams are tasked with the daunting responsibility of managing this relative goldmine, while the business demands higher performance levels, increased agility, and flexibility​ despite data growing at an unprecedented rate (talking about zettabytes). Yet, with such importance put on data, companies consistently fall short on delivering the performance, agility, and availability required by the business.

Legacy Technology is hurting Databases

Many organizations are running their business critical databases on legacy infrastructure and technology, which creates complexities and database challenges. Today, IT leaders struggle to manage the unrelenting complexity across their database estate. This complexity makes it difficult for the business to pursue new markets, develop advanced products & services, and tackle strategic initiatives, such as digital transformation projects.

Much of the challenge stems from legacy infrastructure, constructed with discrete resource silos, such as storage, server, virtualization, networking, and security. This fragmented design makes it difficult and time consuming to provision new database infrastructure and database instances. Additionally, these legacy architectures have multiple points of failure, creating a fragile IT system that is susceptible to unplanned downtime.

The siloed database architecture creates an undeniable complexity that has a profound impact on already-stretched IT teams. This complexity requires tight coordination between multiple IT specialists and teams to handle mundane database operations, which leaves little time for true innovation to meet hard to maintain SLAs. Now layer the inherent challenges of database deployment, patching, management, and troubleshooting on top of the infrastructure complexity and the situation quickly becomes untenable as the environment scales out. Finger-pointing among teams for case resolution generates blown SLAs because infrastructure for databases takes too long to deploy.​ Too much time is spent on time-consuming maintenance resulting in 75%1 of the database management budget spent ​on labor according to a recent IDC study. Database performance needs to scale with the business growth, yet organizations can’t meet growing performance SLAs​ during peak usage resulting in poor customer experiences. To meet growing performance demands usually require expensive forklift upgrades that involve extended maintenance outages.

Furthermore, the manual nature of database operations is prone to human error resulting in downtime for critical database. The average enterprise environment has 10 copies of each production database2 which are stored on expensive SAN storage. According to the IDC research, between 45% and 60% of total storage capacity is dedicated to accommodating copy data resulting in an estimated $56 Billion in copy data costs by 2020.

Nutanix Solution for Databases

Delivering greater database performance, agility, and availability starts with eliminating the silos and reducing the daily burden of operational complexity. The Nutanix solution for databases provides the simplicity of managing all of your workloads from a single, unified management platform with one-click operations, automated management, and enhanced availability. Through HCI and DBaaS, Nutanix helps solve the infrastructure problems created by the overwhelming complexity of legacy architecture, but how does this relate to value for databases? We can start by focusing on three key areas:​

Enhanced Time to Value & Business Agility​

Executing at the speed of business faster, with greater efficiency and adapting to changing needs with less time required to pivot is paramount to your company’s success. Nutanix web-scale architecture was built from the ground up with a single control plane that scales transactional & analytical databases non-disruptively​. This provides linear performance scaling and localized IO serving the most demanding database workload needs​. Nutanix Era provides DBaaS functionality with one-click database management [provision, clone, patch, refresh, and backup] in just a few minutes​. Developers need to build and test technology quickly and are relying on admins and DBAs to deliver the environments needed to support. Nutanix can provide the agility required for developers by deploying databases quickly and per best practices, and in some cases, accelerate deployment to development and test environments by up to 10x3. The time saved allows DBAs to focus on projects aligned with business initiatives versus being bogged down in operational tasks.

Maximize Uptime & Security​

Availability and scalability are part of the DNA that comprises our web-scale architecture which can self-heal and recover proactively. ​Integrated, automated, application and infrastructure security, data-at-rest encryption & database masking​ are included with Nutanix and available to create a secure environment without sacrificing performance. Systemized and automated database patching ensure that all patches have been deployed after testing and that no database is vulnerable to known attacks, avoiding downtime due to missing security patches. While it’s necessary to regularly upgrade and back up your components, it can often be a tough trade-off when it results in temporary business disruption. Nutanix for databases helps you avoid this predicament with simplified, non-disruptive IT operations that help maximize your business uptime and data resiliency. Non-disruptive upgrades, patching, and data resiliency to protect from failures mean less downtime for tier 0 & 1 instances​ resulting in slashing downtime by as much as 85%4. Keeping your business running smoothly is a core objective when managing databases.

Operational Efficiency & Reduced Costs​

Key to every customer is how do we reduce costs over the long run. Nutanix solutions for databases can eliminate wasteful copy data costs​ by slashing storage [capex] costs by as much as 6x5 with zero-byte clones and space-efficient snapshots found in Era. Licensing costs can be reduced by as much as 2x6 by consolidating multiple siloed database environments into a single platform and doing more with less. There are also tremendous benefits from simplified management by spending less time on the day to day operations as well as the resiliency (less downtime) and performance gains that make employees more productive. Nutanix’s solution for database approach offers real, tangible, material benefits to customers in terms of greater agility, faster time to value, and lower Total Cost of Ownership. A study conducted by IDC4 to quantify the general benefits of Nutanix infrastructure found the following:

  • 62% lower TCO with a 7 month payback period. The biggest benefits are in terms of better business productivity and agility and lower operational expenses.
  • Nutanix systems reduce management time by over 60%.
  • Reduce unplanned downtime occurrences by up to 85%.
  • Customers can be more agile in responding to new needs from the business by being able to deploy new compute 73% faster, new storage 68% faster and almost 40% less time for deploying hypervisor with simplified (automated) one-click database operations to deploy, manage, and support entire database environments.

Learning More

If you are interested in learning more about Nutanix Solutions for Databases, go to https://nutanix.com/databases where you can register to kick the tires with a test drive. We also invite you to reach out on our community site https://next.nutanix.com and connect with our subject matter experts and peers. To find out more about Nutanix DBaaS check Nutanix Era or visit the Nutanix University Era playlist.

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1 IDC Oracle’s Autonomous Database: AI-based Automation for Database Management and Operations
2 IDC Copy Data Management report 2016 & 2018
3 Valpak Customer Success Story – 10X faster deployment on Nutanix than legacy systems
4 IDC White Paper [2019] - 85% fewer unplanned outages
5 Nutanix calculation –Nutanix storage efficiency technote – CDM costs reduced by 6X
6 American Healthcare Provider Win – slashed database licensing costs by more than half [43% of the cost]​