Announced on October 8, 2012 IBM PureData Systems were heavily featured in the Information on Demand conference opening keynote this morning. There are three members of the PureData family:
I’m using the abbreviations for convenience and to save keystrokes.
PDST is built on IBM’s pureScale technology; pureScale is the shared-disk cluster technology for DB2 running on Power and Intel processors. IBM based pureScale on the DB2 for z/OS Parallel Sysplex fault tolerance that mainframers have been using for years. The relatively slow adoption of pureScale has been a puzzlement. High-availability database solutions are being adopted by government and industry where the results of even a brief outage can range from bad for business to catastrophic. One inhibitor to adoption has been removed, that of the InfiniBand requirement for cluster communications. The PureData System for Transactions uses a simple Enternet connection for lashing together nodes in the cluster.
PDSOA is the next generation of the IBM Smart Analytics System (ISAS). ISAS was arguably IBM’s first data “appliance” – a preconfigured, balanced processor/memory/storage stack bundled with InfoSphere Warehouse. InfoSphere Warehouse employs the shared-nothing MPP functionality formerly known as Data Partioning Feature (DPF). One prospective use of PDSOA would be near-real-time fraud detection.
PDSA is Netezza running under the covers. Using innovative function-to-data Field-Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) integrated circuits, Netezza achieves orders-of-magnitude greater query performance for deep analytics like market-basket analysis.
The goal of the entire PureSystems portfolio – which includes offerings for WebSphere and custom applications – is to accelerate time-to-value and reduce or eliminate the repetitive, mundane tasks involved in infrastructure deployment. IBM says that their PureData Systems go from door-stop to ”load ready” in 4 hours. Enterprises that provision database servers regularly commit weeks to these tasks.
One telling anecdote is that when the PureSystems plan was presented to then IBM CEO Sam Palmisano, Sam’s reply was that team was “building the AS/400″, a rock-solid platform known for its integration (hence the “i” in iSeries and System i), simplicity, and ease of maintenance and use. Indeed, two of the PureData servers are manufactured in the AS/400 Rochester, MN IBM Lab. PureSystems are nicknamed ”AS/500″.
There’s lot’s more detail to come on the PureData varients. Think of this as a cheat-sheet for telling the siblings apart.