In Part One of this three part series I talked about distributed
transactional databases being the Holy Grail of database systems. Among other
things the promise of such systems is to provide on-demand capacity,
continuous availability and geographically distributed operation. But the
historical approaches to building distributed transactional databases have
involved unacceptable trade-offs, and as a result general purpose databases
systems predicated on a single-server architecture have dominated the
industry for decades.
In our quest for the Holy Grail of databases we acknowledge that there are
folks who have given up on the highly desirable characteristic of
transactional consistency in favor of a distributed operation. That is a
trade-off that may be attractive if you can't find a way to scale-out
transactions, but it is a drastic choice that moves a lot of com... (more)
The world runs on transactional database systems. Every business depends on
them, and we each interact with them many times each day. Furthermore the
world needs to build thousands more applications of transactional database
systems to support the next-generation web. Nothing controversial there, but
there is a problem: transactional database systems have stubbornly refused to
join the 21st century.
The rest of the world is moving toward data center architectures predicated
on thousands of commodity machines, commodity networks, and "scale-out"
designs. These data centers will o... (more)